Relmapator Running Journal

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Relmopator Barimen; aka Realmer; aka Silvermane

Relmopator.jpg Realmer3.jpg

Chaos Form: Winged Nosferateau Demon

Realmerform1.jpg Realmerform2.jpg

Avatar Form: Huge Vulture

Relmopator's Avatar Form.jpg


The Journals of Jeweled Amber: Relmopator Barimen


Contents

Volume One: The Vampire of the Dungeons

Book One: An Unexpected Ambassador

Prelude to Madness

As it was told to me.

  • After Dworkin ‘helped’ Corwin escape from the dungeons of Amber, he also left Amber, unbeknownst to anyone. He ended up in a Shadow named Montagar; a place of High Magic with a fast Time Flow compared to Amber. Dworkin had had a destination in mind when he left Amber and began his Shadow Walk, but his madness returned somewhere along the way and when he ‘came to’ he was in Montagar and was not exactly sure who he was. He knew his name and that he wielded great powers, but not much else.
  • He set himself up as a Wizard in a small city and over time took a wife and sired a child; they named her Satura. Dworkin and his wife Verna raised Satura until she was twenty-one when she married a nobleman of Montagar, Sir Kandith, and soon after she gave birth to a son, Relmopator. Dworkin and Verna, Satura and Sir Kandith raised Relmopator together, teaching him everything they could; he was a gifted child.
  • Shortly after Realmer’s sixth birthday Dworkin had a run in with some local Wizards who were insisting that he join their Guild, forsake the use of magic forever, or leave the area immediately; Dworkin did not wish to do any of these so he told them to leave. When they didn’t he Compelled them to leave using his powerful magic. Several days later the wizards returned with more of their kind, all with the intent of forcing Dworkin to comply with their demands. A again Dworkin refused and that is when a Battle of Magics quickly began, and ended. At the first hint of a great threat, Dworkin’s shattered mind grasped at his true identity and his true source of power. Using the power of Pattern, Dworkin temporarily changed the local Laws of Magic which prevented the wizards from casting any spells. Then he used Sorcery and his own Spells to end the lives of the original six wizards that arrived several days previously; he made sure their deaths’ were both dramatic and painful. He told the others to never return or their fate would be even worse; the remaining six wizards fled for their lives.
  • Dworkin's effort returned his memories and the errand he had originally left Amber to complete. He set out to complete it but once on the move his memory shifted again and while he completed the errand, he forgot about his wife and family and returned to Amber and the Patternfall war proceeded to its completion. With the repair of the Pattern, and a new King in Amber, Dworkin's memories were fully restored and he sought Montagar again. He knew he had to return to Montagar and set things right with his family there.
  • The time flow of Montagar was very fast compared to the Shadows surrounding it and when Dworkin got back, forty years had passed there. He found that his home had been razed and burned to the ground and that his lands had been burned as well and the earth salted; there was no sign of his wife, daughter or son in law. While his powers were great, they could not locate the trio. Investigations of nearby Shadows suggested that the three had been present when a gathering of wizards had attacked them, either killing them or abducting them. Many of the Shadows showed the child escaping. His assumption from such research was that his wife and daughter were captured and their location was significantly defended. While Dworkin has powers beyond nearly all creatures in Shadow, he is not omniscient. Since his daughter had never walked the Pattern, the Pattern could not generate a Pattern Ghost accurately. He had found evidence the son in law had died in battle, leaving a small inheritance for the maintenance of his family and that the razing of his home and lands had happened after the son in law's death. Unable to locate his wife, or daughter, he decided he could find the grandson and searched until he did.

As I remember it.

  • My first memory was that I couldn't breathe, it was hot, I felt constrained, my vision was blurry, just light and dark shadow. Then my grandmother's and mother's faces, then sounds, their voices, as though from far away, then suddenly loud. It was difficult to breathe, I was in pain, I wanted to cry out but was too weak, my face felt wet. I don't know if that was my birth or sometime after, but it is the strongest and oldest memory I can recall.
  • I remember grandmother telling me stories about fairies when I was still a baby and grandfather always wiggling his fingers at me, then nodding and smiling. My mother was always watching over me, holding me sometimes, but oddly distant. I remember a man in armor with light skin and dark hair standing over me with a warm smile on his face; I recall a deep voice, but saying calming words; my father.
  • Comprehension came quickly, then speech and language, but I was still weak and frail and movement was difficult. My grandfather and grandmother noticed my gift and taught me many things while I was still but a baby. And before I could even stand or walk, I could speak full sentences, read and comprehend what I was reading. Then I learned many languages, both spoken and written and was already adept at a few Cantrips by the time I was six years of age. One day many men arrived outside our home and had a loud argument with my grandfather, that turned into a quick battle of magic to the death for half of them... the other half ran away after grandfather yelled at them, then my grandfather walked away and didn't come back. My grandmother and mother were left to care for me alone, with occasional visits from my father.
  • Grandmother continued to educate me and taught me many languages and how to read a few of them, my mother taught me how to read the rest, sort of, and she taught me how to write, in several different languages and several types of script. I wished to continue my magical training, but mother warned against it, considering the visiting Wizards' problem with Dworkin, who was no longer there to protect them... grandmother always replied that she was more than capable of protecting them all.
  • Not long after my twenty first birthday, we were informed by an Emissary of the King that my father, Sir Kandith, had performed valorously and heroically to save the men of his company and died in glorious combat doing so. My small inheritance sustained us all quite well for many years. Then one day, while was I away getting supplies and foodstuffs, our home was attacked by Wizards and razed then burned to the ground as well as all of our lands... I assumed my mother and grandmother perished in the fire. I tortured myself for years wondering what would have happened if I had not been away. I spent many years working as a scribe in the next closest city to our destroyed home, somewhere I was not already known.
  • Dworkin found me in that nearby city as I was still working as a scribe; I was in my late forties, but still looked like a very handsome young man. I was angry at my grandfather for abandoning us and I told him that I and my mother and grandmother wondered for many years what happened. I told him that my father had died in one of the king's wars when I was young and my inheritance, while small, allowed us a quiet comfortable life for many years... but still we wondered what had happened to you that day. I told him that many years back wizards suddenly attacked and destroyed our home. I told him I had barely escaped only because I was not present and that I assumed that my mother and grandmother had perished in the fire.
  • Dworkin did not explain his absence to me, but instead said, “Our revenge shall be swift and final. Follow me, grandson.” Dworkin led me through Shadow, a short cut to the Wizard’s Guild Tower housing the guilty parties. Using a very powerful Spell (or perhaps Logrus Powers), Dworkin completely obliterated the Wizard’s Guild Tower and all within, but nothing else in the city was affected. Dworkin then took me to a Shadow ‘next door’, a world called Oerth. He took me to the Free City of Greyhawk and enrolled me at the University of Magic there. Dworkin gave me all the treasure I would need to pay for my schooling and supplies for many years to come then told me, “Learn all you can about Magic; everything. One day I will return for you and take you to your true home, but it may be many years.” Then Dworkin departed leaving me to fend for myself in a new city and a new world.
  • I spent about a decade of my life and my entire 'fortune' learning Magic at the Academy of Magics in the Free City of Greyhawk on the World of Oerth. I could have left within the first year after arriving as I had learned all the basics of Wizardry, but I stayed on to learn more, and more spells, and more magical tactics and more about magical artifacts of the land. Many of those latter years were spent away from the Academy but still within the city, learning how to earn coin for magic, which began my dive into continualism magics and earned me much coin in the beginning, but then once everyone had what they wanted, needed or could afford, the coins stopped coming. This turn of events is what led me to the life of Adventuring when a bartender and friend hired me and a couple of warriors, a thief and a cleric, on behalf of 'the city', to descend into the sewers beneath and find out why there was such a huge problem with the rats.
  • Years after that first underground adventure, a man calling himself Merlin, but more likely a Shadow of The Merlin of Chaos, took me and some other Adventurers from Greyhawk on a trip through Shadow... but something went wrong during our 'Logrus Tendril Travel' and we all got flung into separate Shadows. The world I was in was dark and dangerous, filled with predators both fauna and flora, hostile environment and environmental events and nearly everything was toxic or poisonous to me. Then I 'met' The Entity (a future main antagonist); a Powerful Psychic Being that was non-corporeal as far as I could tell and the name it gave me and demanded I call upon for power, has since been stricken from my memory by my choice and by my Will alone. The Entity ‘altered’ by my body (used my own latent Shape Shifting Power against me); my skin turned a sickening shade of gray, which caused the itching and burning to stop, then my eyes changed somehow, and they stopped burning as well, and I was able to see better in the darkness of that realm and my insides were changed so I could breathe better and eat and drink what the world had to offer, those things that had previously been deadly to me. Then The Entity forced me to change my way of using magic, my Magic Style (became a Specialist Wizard; Necromancer, with Wizard Kit; Witch/Warlock). I was forced to learn Magic again, a different way, just to cast the spells I already knew... but there were a few benefits.
  • When I tried to steal some of The Entity's Power at a time when I could tell it was unaware and vulnerable, it caught me and cursed the power I took; though my vision was greatly enhanced including seeing the invisible, seeing Illusions as slightly transparent, seeing magic as an aura, night vision equal to day vision, and a few other minor enhancements, it was at a cost... my eyes changed and they looked like reflective silvery metallic orbs in my head. The Entity then ‘altered’ by my body my body again; my muscles atrophied and drew tight against my bones, then my skin shrank down and drew tight against my atrophied muscles, then my body became wracked with varying levels of pain, but constant. I knew it would never happen again, and I only wish I had grabbed for more of The Entity's Power more quickly, instead of slyly, considering I got caught and punished heavily. After several years, local time, Shadow Merlin finally found me and snuck me out before The Entity could react; I was returned home to the City of Greyhawk along with my other companions, but Shadow Merlin was unable to undo what had been done to me in that Shadow Realm by that Entity of Power. And then he left and I have never seen him since.
  • During my many adventures spanning several decades and several worlds all within what I call the Gygax Shadow System, (all D&D worlds like Greyhawk, Forgotten Realms, etc.) I was ‘Cursed’ repeatedly; including but not limited to: Physical Strength Drain, Life Energy Drain (level loss), Perspective and Moral Shift (Alignment changed), and forced Shape Shifting into a Dragon or Dragonkin... it's difficult to remember for sure; it literally altered my way of thinking. Then there was a turn of good luck and I was changed back into my True Human Form via very powerful Wish Magic... and then shortly thereafter I was willingly turned into a Vampyr; a not living but not undead vampire. (A forced Shape Shift into an Amberite with vampiric abilities and Forms). I lived for a couple of decades as a Vampyr and as the Lord of an island castle filled with ‘rifts’ to other worlds and a Magical Rift Gate that could be set to travel to many known worlds.
  • Then one day, out of nowhere and without warning, as seemed to be his way, my Grandfather Dworkin showed up again and explained to me about my Amber Heritage and the possibilities of many special abilities. Dworkin took me through Shadow for a long time until we reached a Realm known as Ambir, a Shade of Amber with a Shade of the Pattern; walking it allowed me to Shadow Walk but not to wander in to Amber itself. It also gave me access to my Shape Shifting abilities, Power Words, Sorcery, Conjuration & Compelling and a limited form of Trump Artistry. Dworkin spent just enough time to show me how to use my Shape Shifting Powers, firstly, then how to alter my Spells according to the Magic Laws of the Shadow I was in, and how to use my Psyche to ‘feel’ the Magic of the Shadow to know what to change… and several other Psyche tricks. He also taught me about Conjuring, Compelling and Power Words. He also helped me create a Familiar from my own blood, a miniature Beholder that I named Bob. After a short time, Dworkin took me back into Shadow, showing me how to Shadow Walk and Hellride... then one day he disappeared and once again left me to fend for myself in Shadow... and in exactly the same Shadow as he found me.
  • I traveled through many Shadows near the Gygax Shadow System. I picked up the basics of Trump Artistry, but my Trumps were limited. After many years I grew curious about the different types of worlds and peoples out there deeper in Shadow or towards Amber... so I began exploring Shadows farther away for that shadow system with higher forms of technology and sometimes no magic, present anyway. Then places with strange physical laws and odd beings... then I turned around and began heading towards Amber. Because I had walked a Shade Pattern it allowed me to get closer to Amber than most other means, but still only as close as Ambir, so I explored a bit and I a group of Shadows I like to call the “Tarnished Circle”; a collection of Shadows just outside the Golden Circle, Shadows of current Golden Circle kingdoms that never had interference from or commerce with Amber or even the Golden Circle Kingdoms. I spent many years exploring those little explored Shadows closest to Amber... then, as it always was and is, Dworkin found me again, and out of nowhere took me away... but that time my grandfather took me to Amber, at long last.
  • But first, I attended the Royal Studies Course at the University of Fantalin in Thelusia. There I met Aries Colbrese, a Shadow of Dworkin, I believe. He gave me a tour and told me the history of the University; apparently the courses dated back to Caine, Julian and Gerard's youth. While I was in attendance, I met Arloxedra, the son of King Eric, during his term as an instructor after Patternfall... we did not hit it off and we never really got along well. But I was not concerned about making friends, I was studying and learning all I could so I could walk the Pattern in Amber.

As it was Written.

Michael's intro to Jeweled Amber; what actually happened after Patternfall.


A Mission, Adask, Walking the Pattern and Family

  • Michael's help needed.
  • A couple of days before Graduation, after I had completed all of my classes, Aries summoned me to his private office for a meeting. I accompanied Aries into Shadow on a Mission of great importance to Amber and of great personal importance to me. I met three Adasks, all War Chiefs of their of Clan; Hagalta, Xorit, and Krelat. This is when I learned that my mother, Satura, still lived and was the captive and wife of Hagalta. He presented me with a Tome that was of great importance to King Random and said he would only give it to him through me, so he could meet me, his son. Then Hagalta gave me my mother's Ring to prove he truly had her then he and Krelat turned and departed... Xorit remained behind and told me that he did not support Hagalta or Krelat but did support my mother, then he gave me a bag of Ice Orc Marbles, told me how they worked, then departed. Aries took me to Amber, the Pattern Chamber specifically, Dworkin, Random and Benedict were waiting; I handed the Tome over to Random then Walked the Pattern and promptly passed out at its center.
  • Even though I was assigned an apartment in the family wing, I was also allowed, with Fiona's permission, to take over an unused room on the Pattern Level of the Dungeons for the purposes of magical research... it became my regular living space. After walking the Pattern, my Ambir Shade Pattern Imprint was overwritten somewhat. The Pattern of Amber was more powerful than the Shade Primal Pattern of Ambir, but there was enough of a difference that there are times I can use one or the other, but essentially, they are the same power.


  • Michael's help needed.
  • Meet Gerard on Pattern Guard Duty, then he walks Pattern and transports away, thinking I was his replacement. Then Flora arrives, Gerard's replacement, and they hit it off famously. She invites him to Seaview Gardens for breakfast and it becomes a daily thing.
  • After a bit more schooling, I became a full Trump Artist, but still my studies continued, but not because anyone told me to. Unlike Arlo, I did not like spending my time in the Library, preferring instead to ‘check out' large numbers of books at one time and take them to my private rooms in the Dungeons.


  • Michael's help needed.
  • Gan is my door guard, I hired Carston from the local CHAD Hall in the city for my nighttime forays into the city for supplies and such. One night, just strolling, not shopping, find lost little mangy poodle; name it Kevin, make it my pet.
  • I spent many years, decades perhaps, studying Magic and Powers... I learned even more about Sorcery and the Pattern; that is when Dworkin gifted me a Shade of the Jewel of Judgment, the one particular to the Shade of Ambir where I originally gained my Pattern Imprint... oddly, it was green, not red. It was and is a potent signature piece for magical works, but is more effective in Shadows 'below' the level of the Shade of Ambir, rather than closer to the real Amber... but still, a powerful Artifact; I was nearly brought to tears of joy, and nearly drooling with anticipation of the power at my command.
  • My studies shifted to Artifact creation Empowerment. I spent decades learning all I could from tomes in the Library and from talks with Dworkin and others. When I felt ready, I created my first Artifact, without assistance; it was my Sorcerer's Robe, which acted as clothing, armor and magical storage, as well as extremely fast movement and flight. After many weeks rest, I began on my next Artifact, my Scrimshawed Bone Staff; a weapon, an attack beast and a guardian. Both created in the Pattern Chamber in the Dungeons of under Castle Amber, both created from his own blood, both Empowered with versions of my own Powers including Shape Shifting and Spell Use, among others.
  • My entry into the Family's Politics and intrigue came one day when I was idly walking the corridors of the Dungeons and overheard King Random speaking in a nearby room, I decided to eavesdrops on Random and the others in the room; they were discussing a great valley filled with dead bodies and a powerfully magical sword. I was invited in by King Random, who knew I was eavesdropping, to contribute to the conversation; Benedict, Arloxedra and Vander, one of the Late King Eric's other sons, were all present. There were three swords on a large stone table in the center of the room; I recognized them immediately for what they were; The Swords of Power, though these looked a little different with the pommels showing the symbol of each. I knew their legend and told them all of what I had heard, including the complete Song of the Swords... though I only chanted it for them. I was, and still am, curious as to the location of that great valley... which specific Shadow it is in.


  • Michael's help needed.
  • Soon afterwards, I had a conversation with Arlo in the Library about Adagalasck, my mother Satura and Vox; he had suspicions that I was descended from Vox and Dworkin and for some reason seemed to trust me less because of it... or so it seemed. Then Arlo showed me some new cards soon to arrive in the King Random Deck; Ninaaratres and Emiliesa. Then, oddly, Arlo gave me a Stone from Adagalasck and told me to walk the Pattern with it and that will allow access to that sealed Realm, so I did as Arlo suggested.

Prince Julian and Sir Gangdis in the Dungeons of Amber

  • Michael James Watson

Gangdis and Julian are arguing horse breeding one day, dark in the dungeons. Julian seems to be laughing, over a tankard of strong smelling mead, and his laughter is so out of character that its is startling.. They seem like old war buddies talking over ancient lines of horse long dead..

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer would be returning from the Pattern Chamber; most likely from guard duty, research or artifact creation... all are possibilities. Bob is floating a few yards in front of him and several feet above his head, somewhat in the shadows. Realmer stops and greets them both. "Gangdis, good to see you are in high spirits today. Prince Julian, good to see you again; it is rare that we see one another, what with me roaming the dungeons and you roaming the Forest Arden. May I join you? Or would you both like to come in? I have a wonderful mead and several beers I have made myself."

  • Michael James Watson

Julian raises and eyebrow uncertainly... "Well, why not... Gangdis and I were remember old times.. He was with father for some of the battles against Weirmonneker. Were wolves and owlbear mostly. Gangdis and I stood against 100 owlbears together.. Bloody day it was.. I was still a ranger of Arden then. It wasn't yet my charge" He comes in and settles, his armor shifting to a bracer. The rumor is that if he shifts his armor he is relaxing. But he has been known to attend family dinners in armor

  • Michael James Watson

Gangdis"100? Dear boy, it was 300 at least!" Julian chuckles..."It was 78, i counted. But i won't change the story if i hear you telling it at the Elite hall"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer chuckles as he gets a few bottles and sets them on the small table in front of the sitting chairs. "Please, help yourselves. Back in my adventuring days I also encountered werewolves and owlbears, but never in those numbers. But I have found that a Fireball Spell can be quite efficacious with large groups."

  • Michael James Watson

Julian-"Magic.. Its a pity it so unreliable. A minute of shadow left or right and the spell is ineffective.. In shadow, yes, but in Arden, in Amber, its a fragile weapon. A strong sword is rarely risky to rely on."

  • Michael James Watson

Gang-"Ak. I don't go to the Elite Hall anymore.... This young Elites have no appreciation for history. I can't take them seriously.. and ... they mock me...not to my face of course... But I'm not up to thrashing the lot of them.. "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"I cannot disagree with you, cousin; Magic is tricky in and around Amber. But I much prefer a staff over a sword, myself. But I do understand the need for a good melee weapon. Though I may not be a great warrior such as yourselves, I do have SOME tactical sense." Realmer takes a seat in one of the empty chairs so he can see both of them easily and he pours himself some of his mead. Realmer looks to Gangdis, "Perhaps a good thrashing is exactly what those disrespectful young Elites need, followed by a good history lesson. Those who do not study history are doomed to repeat it."

  • Michael James Watson

gang-"Naw.. let them twitter. They have avoided real wars and raised in rank in shadow. Shadow wars are serious enough for the participants but they are not like danger to Amber. And not all of them.. Just a few.. I'm afraid i would embarrass myself if i drew blade on them.. My time is past.. they are the future"

  • Michael James Watson

Jul-"Gangdis, I'm half tempted to drag you out into Arden and tie your arse to a horse till you remember why you wear a Valorous band"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"I would disagree with you on the point of your time being past; I feel there is still much for you to offer to Amber and me personally."

  • Michael James Watson

Gangdis laughs, refilling his mug" Argh! I'm sure id remember it while i hung on the underside of the beast...bouncing my head off the ground" gang turns, "Oh is there, youngster? I've earned my rest. I earned it fighting the Wier, the moonriders, and breaking the Siege of Bunny Free. I fought the Dragons of Perdition when they attacked Thelusia. I was on post when Castle Amber was not much more then a manor house.. When you have served Amber as long as I have, a third as long as I have, you may want your rest as well"

  • Michael James Watson

Jul-"You want rest old man, I can plop you on a beach at Nasty Place and let you lay there till you grow bored. Its not rest you need, its action"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer exchanges a glance with Julian then looks back to Gangdis. "I cannot deny that you have earned your rest, Gangdis; your service has been extraordinary. But I agree with Julian, I believe you are a man of action and I am sure this semi-retirement duty of guarding my door is boring you out of your mind. I was considering taking you with me, when I leave Amber to investigate Hagalta and find a way to free my mother... but perhaps I will have to take someone else if you crave your rest so much."

  • Michael James Watson

gang-"Well, in the realms you come from do the grandmothers suck eggs? " Julian chokes briefly, suppressing a laugh.

  • Michael James Watson

gang-"Ill go where you wish because i won't have it said i abandoned my charge. But your staying her suits me fine"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Yes, Gangdis, some grandmothers do 'suck eggs'." Realmer says with a smile. "And I am happy to hear you will be accompanying me on my journey, I'm sure the 'young' CHAD mercenary I hired to escort me around the city will benefit greatly from your experience and wisdom... he will also be joining me."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer glances at Julian again and takes a long drink of his mead. He wonders if teasing, baiting or gently antagonizing Gangdis is the best ploy and if he should add something more. But then Bob the Beholder floats over, but not too close, and for only the second time ever, speaks. It addresses Gangdis, its voice is deep yet smooth, its lips curl back over its many pointed teeth as it carefully enunciates each word. "I am also happy you are coming with us. Your stories are far more interesting than Sir Carston's." Bob's spherical body then angles downward and all of its eyes close momentarily... it would appear like a head nod of respect. Then Bob's eyes open and it floats up and away from the group; Realmer is speechless and his mouth is hanging open slightly. He recovers quickly by drinking some mead.

  • Michael James Watson

Julian-"Who is Sir Carston?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"My CHAD mercenary" Realmer replies to Julian. "And Bob is correct, Gangdis' stories are better." Realmer then nods his head in respect to Gangdis in the same fashion that Bob did.

  • Michael James Watson

Julian-"CHAD? You have Sir Gangdis of Cogswell as your assigned elite and you dare spend a bent copper wing on a damned Tosaian sellsword? What the suffering hell? " Turning on Gangdis-"What kind of man is this Carston? Does he know who he is working for? Not him, " pointing casually to you, "But for you?"

  • Michael James Watson

"Ak Jules, for the love of.. I don't need to prowl the night. Were he to leave the realm id go.. As for Carston.. He is a serviceable man. A fair sword. A military man, not one of the adventurers.. He is hard, but polite enough.. Hes better able to scare off knife workers in the street then an old man like me"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Well, in all fairness, cousin" Realmer begins, addressing Julian, "I was informed that Gangdis was my 'door guard' not my Assigned Elite Guard. And when I hired Sir Carston Brak, I was mostly unaware of who Gangdis is and what he has accomplished. And Carston has worked out well for my forays into the City. But I will certainly want and need someone with Gangdis' experience and wisdom when I depart Amber. And as far as spending coin on him... sometimes a sellsword will be more honest than an assigned royal guard. And sometimes a sellsword can go places and learn things a royal guard might not."

  • Michael James Watson

Julian seems unconvinced but shrugs "Its you gold. So where do you plan to travel?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

(assuming this is post Arlo talk?) "Adagalasck. According to Arlo I should go there. It relates to Hagalta and my mother, Satura."

  • Michael James Watson

he ponders... "Never been there..Nina is there though...Emilie too I'd assume.." he looks wistful for a moment.. "This Hagalta... I've heard of him recently but never before An Adask... Like Nina and Emilie.. hmm I hadn't realized.... I rarely have seen you in the day light.... You're of Adask stock... hmm ... "

  • Michael James Watson

Taking out his trumps he thumbs out Satura's picture.. nod. "Yes, i see it now.. Adask. Its curious that i hadn't heard that mentioned in reference to you or her... Her card is warm..sort of... "

  • Michael James Watson

"We of the blood often forget our matriarchal line. My mother was... difficult.. she was Queen of Amber for a time, like many of Oberon's women.. but.. politics played poorly with her.. "

  • Michael James Watson

gang-"Rilga was lovely. But yes, Oberon treated her like most women, replaceable.. And for Clarissa of all people"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"My... our.. Adask heritage is a new information to me. I have always been pale and my eyes have always been different, just like my mother's and grandmother's... but I never knew we were Adask until recently, relatively speaking. And her card is warm most likely because it is being blocked because she is being held against her will by Hagalta."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer looks a bit angry and his face actually distorts slightly making him look somewhat more vampiric (Nosferatu) but then his face returns to normal and then he sips his mead in silence.

  • Michael James Watson

Julian.--"Well, this sounds like a personal matter and I would respect your desire to handle it on your own.. However, an Aunt being held against her will? My only aunt at that.. Should you wish my aid, trump me. '

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"I thank you for your respect and discretion. And I thank you kindly for your offer of help, Julian. I may very well take you up on your offer, should the need arise. I hear your hunting pack is beyond compare, be sure to bring them with, should I call."

  • Michael James Watson

"I've heard Ad...... is locked. Do you have a method to gain access? "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer smiles slyly, "I wouldn't be planning a trip there if I didn't have a way in." After a moment he adds, "Though, without Arloxedra's help I wouldn't have a way in, so I guess he is due his credit." Realmer would have walked the Pattern, with the Stone, as soon after it was given as possible.

  • Michael James Watson

"Well, I've a way in if you need it. It would cause me..... some heartache.... but its for a good cause. Should you wish it I'll oblige""

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer considers Julian's offer for a moment. "If my method should fail, I will certainly be in contact. But for now I would rather spare you the heartache. And again, thank you for your offer of help; whether I need it or not, your willingness to help will not be forgotten."

  • Michael James Watson

he nods, fumbling with Satura's trump... contemplating.. Slipping the card out he removes two others.. The frames and backs show them to not be trumps of the regular deck. They look less finished, He slides them over. "Take those.. I'll want them back. If you use them, give them my regards. Tell them Caine and I are well, survived Patternfall, and bid them to come to Amber.. Oberon is gone and Random.....is a different kind of king. He might be amendable. "

  • Michael James Watson

You see one is Emilie and the other Nina.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Again, my greatest thanks." Realmer slips them up the same sleeve, into the same pocket, that he slipped the Trump for Adagalasck.

  • Michael James Watson

Julian rises and bids adieu, shifting his armor on. he nods to you both and steps out without preamble

  • Michael James Watson

Gang-'Sorry about that ..Some of them.... well. They don't have many contemporaries.. They age out.. So were you serious about traveling? I could send word to the CHAD hall, round up a few horse.. It might be bright out but the Jeweled road is safe enough"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Yes, Gangdis, I am serious about traveling; I have spent enough time in Amber, and a select few Shadows learning, researching and preparing... it's time for me to get out. I want to keep it small; me, you, Carston... you wouldn't happen to know a good Padfoot, would you? We might need someone stealthy. And yes, send word for horses and to Carston as well. I do have a couple of things to do first though; I must say goodbye to Flora, I will so miss our Sea View Garden breakfasts....."

  • Michael James Watson

"I've a thought for a Padfoot.. If you will. Ill look in on him" "Excellent. I trust your judgment. At your discretion."

  • Michael James Watson

he heads off

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

For the next several minutes, Realmer unsuccessfully tries to sort through the Trump Deck and gather up some belongings for the trip ahead, finally Bob says softly, "Just call Flora." Realmer stops and finds her card instantly. "Thank you, Bob. Awful chatty of late." Realmer concentrates on the image of Flora and waits for contact....

  • Michael James Watson

"Yes? Oh.... Not who i expected.. Whats the honor for?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Oh, sorry if I am interrupting an expected contact; I'll be brief. I will be leaving Amber for awhile, headed to Adagalasck. I will be taking Gangdis and Carston with me... and Bob and Kevin as well. I just wanted to let you know that I won't be available for breakfast with you for an undetermined amount of time." He pauses for a moment then adds, "I will miss our breakfast time together."

  • Michael James Watson

'To Adagalasck? Really? Are you sure you want to take Kevin? Its a frolicsome place for a puppy without powers"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Well, he is a tough little nugget... but I see your point. Perhaps it would be best if I left him behind. Would you be willing to watch after him while I am away? I really hate to impose, but you are the only other person in Amber that Kevin likes."

  • Michael James Watson

"Id be delighted too. Pass him over"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer picks him up off his favorite cushion and hands him through to Flora. "I will leave my rooms unlocked, if you need anything for him just come and get it. You do know where my rooms are, don't you?" As he asks he then hands through Kevin's favorite cushion, fave toy, fave food bowl and a bag of homemade treats from a pocket in his robes. "That should cover it for now."

  • Michael James Watson

"Oh i have such things.. And Kevin is not stranger to my suite. Be safe... "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Have fun on your date." Realmer says with a mischievous smile and a wink.... he knows Flora well enough by now. He breaks contact and finishes packing up some things within the many pockets of his magical robe.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer then shuffles out Random' card from the Deck... perhaps the King should know his plans.

  • Michael James Watson

Carly answers of course... then patches you through

  • Michael James Watson

"Yes? Something in the depths i should know?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Yes, Majesty, I will be leaving them for a while. After receiving some information from Arloxedra I have decided to visit Adagalasck to further investigate my mother's captivity, Hagalta and my family connection to the Adask. I will be taking Gangdis with me, as well as a CHAD merc and one other. I just thought you should know as I have no idea the outcome of my visit or how it might affect Amber."

  • Michael James Watson

"Well, Adagalasck huh? Ya... that card is going to be in the deck but it will only deliver the holder to the border. We don't officially have embassies there so don't start a war with them. Not that i wouldn't like our chances. There are a couple of my sisters there... They have refused trump contacts effectively since Oberon chased them out of Amber. The trumps are even warm to the touch but I'm assured they still live. Strange place. Never been there myself. Oh, probably best not to mention it to Julian or Caine if you run into them. Its a sore spot. Both of them took long walks after the sisters were chased off. The betting was that they may never return. Obviously they did.. That was a long time ago.."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"I may have another way in, besides the Trump, Arlo gave me a stone from Adagalasck and had me walk the Pattern with it; he said it should give me access to Adagalasck... then mentioned the Jeweled Road and the blocked access." Realmer decides not to mention that Julian already knows.

  • Michael James Watson

"If you take the pattern, how will you get Gangdis there?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Arloxedra also mentioned that Satura's mother was Vox... but I knew my grandmother to be named Verna... he also seemed to think I was involved in something with Nina and Emilie and Hagalta in some way." Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr. "Oh, I thought Arlo meant for me to imprint the stone then carry it with me along the Jeweled Road and it would allow me passage through the blockade."

  • Michael James Watson

"Arlo is paranoid. But he isn't wrong. Dworkin is hush hush about it. But there is a good chance that Verna is Vox. I can't reach Vox and Dworkin is in hiding as well, the.. Well, that makes sense.. Good.. Well then.... Have fun storming the castle. Don't kill anyone we might need in the future"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

“I will only kill those that try to kill me first. And sometimes paranoia can be a good thing, but he is way of course concerning me; this whole Adask and Vox connection are new to me. I will try not to cause too much trouble for the Crown and I will let you know if anything concerning Amber comes up."

  • Michael James Watson

he nods, "Fair enough.. Good Luck" he closes the call.

Traveling the Jeweled Road to Adagalasck and Aztalios of Azcala

  • Michael James Watson

Carston stood near the stables, checking the outfitting of the horses. In the time he had worked for Lord Realmer their trips had trips had been in the city. A rough city at times to be sure, but there was nothing like taking to the road on horse back to make a warrior feel like a professional. Gangdis had instructed the grooms as to packing. He picked the horses too before leaving. Drunken old sot he may be but he knows his horse flesh. "Groom! Take these to the courtyard. Ill be back with provender. An hour latter with supplies in the arms of some of the castle pages he arrives to see a surprising figure by his horses.. "Sir?" Carston asks. The slight fop in fox furs turns, nods and hands a card forward. "Carston... When you reach your destination.. and pass the border, have your employers call me.. But don't give him the card till then. I have advice on the matter." Watching his back, Carston thinks, not for the first time, that meddling in the business of royalty is dangerous at the best of times.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer would have viewed the courtyard via one of Bob's 'remote eyes' to check the progress of his 'party' from time to time while packing. Once things appeared to be ready he would finish up and prepare to departure. Once he finished packing what he thought he might need into the many pockets of his Sorcerer's Robe, he also tossed a few extra items and a couple of tomes into an old worn leather backpack and slings it across his back. He summons his Scrimshawed Staff to his right hand and looks around the room one last time. He summons Bob with a mental command; Bob floats over and hovers above his left shoulder then Shape Shifts into an albino raven, now perched upon Realmer's shoulder. "Bob, the courtyard." Realmer says and waits for Bob to deliver them their. Using his Trump Powers, Bob 'teleports' them to the courtyard, but not to the place the Trump in the Deck does. They arrive to the side of one of the entrance ways to the courtyard, allowing them the opportunity to observe the goings on before being observed.(Realmer may not have viewed the fop in fox furs as he only checked in periodically, but Bob would have seen him; his eyes are always watching...)

  • Michael James Watson

Bob notices when he trumps into the courtyard that he is observed by the Courtyards guards.

  • Michael James Watson

Carston nods as you arrive.. "Gangdis isn't here but he isn't too late.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer glances around the courtyard, yet again impressed by the Elites awareness. He advances and glances over the horses and gear then looks to Carston. "I'm sure he will be along shortly. Did he brief you?" Realmer asks looking the man over a little more critically then before, reassessing him before the 'adventure' begins.

  • Michael James Watson

"Yes. a long ride to approach a blockaded Realm. I've supplies for a week though as i understand its not that long a ride. Ah..... There he is.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer nods at Carston's comments, "Excellent. It is always good to be prepared and over supplied." Realmer looks to where Carston is looking.

  • Michael James Watson

Gangdis comes into the courtyard laughing, a wine skin in his hand. He seems to be talking animatedly to the woman with him. He seems to have a young girl with him, thin, tight leathers, pale straw hair with a variety of hair dyes splotches. She seem almost skipping as she talks to Gangdis

  • Michael James Watson

"Ah! Lord Realmer, let me introduce you to Tesa Resa...a friend of mine from the Harbor district. She'll do."

  • Michael James Watson

Tesa, "Ak, Gangdis, you old drunken fart!? you can't go telling him I'll do! We don't know if I'll be paid enough to do him. Sorry, Lord, he forgets himself when hes been,,,,ah,,,,awake...."

  • Michael James Watson
  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer assesses the woman as they approach. He smiles and chuckles then says, "Pleased to meet you, Tesa. Drop the Lord and just call me Realmer, since we will be traveling together. And I'm sure you'll be paid enough for your services, most likely overpaid... but I'm not looking for personal services on this outing." Realmer chuckles and continues. (mt)

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"I'm not exactly sure what I will encounter or what situations I will be in while traveling; so I will need someone who is stealthy and good at getting into and out of places unnoticed. Since Gangdis has brought you here I am hoping you have the skills I need. Name your price and your terms."

  • Michael James Watson

"My price? I suspect a pocket of gold would be nice and i expect expenses to be paid of course. I expect a fair pick of treasures though I suppose you'll take the important pieces. Gany was unclear why you needed an assassin but i suppose that's your business. When you declare a mark i will do the how and you can keep the why to yourself. As for my "Personal" services? All my services are personal. If someone needs to die i suppose the Unicorn and the Fates have already made the call and ill deliver the message. Till then, I'll get into any locked place you find me"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer looks Tesa over again then says, "An assassin? Excellent." He then looks to Gangdis and says "An assassin... more than I was looking for but good thinking. Well done." He looks back to Tesa, "I agree to your terms and performance bonuses are quite likely." He reaches inside one to the large pockets of his robe and pulls out a small sack of gold that is clearly more than a pocketful and tosses it to her.

  • Michael James Watson

She catches it with a nod.. "One more thing.. Though...its a bit embarrassing, and maybe a few days on the road would make it less creepy.. I'm a bit of a fan girl for Amberites. Are you familiar with the Deck Game among the normals of the kingdom?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer is a collector of rumors and does 'prowl' the city at night and hears all sorts of things... he has surely heard of it, perhaps even looked into the rules.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Well, I have been accused of being creepy myself, but find little creepy, myself."

  • Michael James Watson

Non-magical copies of the King random Decks are available all over. Citizens buy them and have Amberites autograph their cards.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"And yes, I have heard of the Deck Game... and I would be pleased to sign your copy of my card." Realmer does not even wait for her to produce it before reaching inside a pocket and pulls out a stylus and ink pot... he is a bit old fashioned that way.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

The stylus is carved from bone, scrimshawed like his staff. The ink is black with a slight purplish, reddish hue; it dries almost instantly.

  • Michael James Watson

She chuckles, produces a deck in a magicians move. Shuffles out your card.

  • Michael James Watson

gang "We should be on our way then.. Many a mile before sleep. We should make Diega Raks by nightfall if we push"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

He signs it 'Relmopator Barimen' in a fine script. "I agree, we should be on our way."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer easily pulls himself into the saddle of the horse chosen for him by Gangdis. He rests the butt of the staff in the right stirrup and adjusts his weight and posture... it has been awhile since he as been in the saddle. He leads his group out of the courtyard and out of the City.

  • Michael James Watson

The road is wide and colorful . And its hard to really draw attention in Amber but the group of you do. Tesa seems to disappear under a hooded cloak, arching in such a way to look more shoulderish, manly. The time passes and few interfere

  • Michael James Watson

A hard ride at a reasonable rate covers a lot of ground.

  • Michael James Watson

Arriving at Diega Raks, the 4 of you find it busy as always but able to accommodate the 4 four of you. Tesa, says she'll be by the horses at dawn but she has people here to see unless you need her personal services

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer chuckles at Tesa's comment and says to have a good night and be careful. Realmer makes sure Gangdis and Carston are set for coin then he is off to his room before getting a meal, to check the room over and 'freshen up'. Bob would leave behind a remote viewing eye immediately or at least before leaving for dinner. (Q: Did Bob notice the fop in fox fur? If so, he would mention it to Realmer since is it obvious Tesa is the 'Padfoot' he hired and not this fellow giving cards to Carston.)

  • Michael James Watson

Morning at the Raks finds Tesa with Gangdis, fitting the horses. Packs strapped into places, water buckets removed and set to the Raks grooms. Looking up Gang walks up, "Yes sir.. nice to get on the road early. Long day... We should get past Wiermon before dark. Smooth travel.. Its been a long time since i got blisters on my bottom. If we decide to stop early, we can find a waymet I'm certain."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"As you see fit; I trust your judgment. I will have Bob scout things out from overhead. I'm sure it won't be necessary but best to be prepared." Realmer nods to Tesa and looks around for Carston. "How were both of your evenings?" he asks of the two present.

  • Michael James Watson

The day goes by fast, a leisurely rate. The shadows shift but the road remains its colorful self.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer studies the phenomenon that is the Jeweled Road at a Psychic level... feeling it flow from one shadow to the next without him doing the shifting. A fascinating experience to be sure.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer does mention that though he has grown used to nice accommodations they are not required and if needed will even camp under the stars... but he has a spell that could take care of accommodations if desired.

  • Michael James Watson

Tesa-"Well, one thing I've learned that will be news at the gaming table... you're aren't a Vampire. No one was sure...Of course Amberite Vampires might be OK with light..."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer chuckles and says, "In the Shadow where I come from there are Magics that will protect a Vampyr from sunlight; if I were a Vampyr I would certainly obtain or create such an artifact." He smiles fiendishly but does not confirm or deny the Vampire debate.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Plus, I hear there are Shadows where a topical cream has been created called 'sunblock' that could prove useful for a Vampyr." He adds offhandedly.

  • Michael James Watson

Carton-"Jeremy Fairhand created Sunlight Stones on Tosa that make one invulnerable to sunlight effects of all kinds. Vampires love them. Of course their creation was a trap. A Vampire King stole their secrets and made tens of thousands of them. Gave them to his army and they attacked the City of Wall. Once they were engaged Jeremy Fairhand dispelled them all. Turned out the complicated combination of material components used had a simple counter combination. Piles of dust with piles of magical item in them for everyone to have. "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"An excellent trap; impressive. Yes, magical protections can have failings, I won't disagree. But any Vampyr worth his or her salt would certainly have more than one way to protect against the weakness that Vampyr's have. Plus, there are more than one kind of Vampire... perhaps not all have an aversion to sunlight."

  • Michael James Watson

Carston-"Well, Jeremy had to become a vampire to figure it out. But he fixed later.

  • Michael James Watson

As the long time floats toward dusk, a flashing light shines on the north. Leaping from shadow off the road come a dozen Jaguars, ridden by fur coated warriors. They leap as if falling down the well of the world. A pair on each of the four of you. Carston is bowled over, drawing his blade and going fully defensive but being hard pressed. Tesa, turns in the saddle and seems to fade into the shadow beneath the horse. The last sight of her is a long black thin blade dragging along the armored belly of one of the jaguars. Its innards falling out explosively with a foul stench. Gangdis drops his mug and grabs one of the riders, throwing him from the back of the beast and replacing him. Driving a dagger into the back of its head and leaping free as it crumbles below him. He lands, draws his long blade, shaking his head unclear at why he is suddenly standing covered in blood

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer most likely is taken by surprise and possibly knocked off his horse, but his Robe's flight ability may keep him from hitting the ground... also the Robe should prevent damage from most attacks. He will focus on the nearest attacker and release a Magic Missile Spell upon him/her... pretty much turning the body into little bits from the explosion of the multiple missiles... if not turning it into goo from the amount of damage.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

The Spell is released from Satura's Ring where it is Racked

  • Michael James Watson

The robe had the barest moment too sense danger since the danger was in the Well of Worlds, falling till the moment it entered the universe around you. You sense a bit of embarrassment from it as you slam beneath the jaguars but the cloak flows you away to deliver your spells. two more fall to the ground and leap, at terminal velocity and at the end of a long fall. one rider from the first leap turn and leap at you. the other two take time to orient, turning ad leaping at the confused Gangdis. You note as you orient that a Carston is hard pressed defending himself but is holding his own. He has his heater shield and sword out. The horses seem to be dancing, not warhorses, but horses of Amber, trained to fight, they seem to be doing well but taking wounds

  • Michael James Watson

From a shadow beneath a horse a blade slips out and crosses the throat of one of the warriors, unaware a foe was there.

  • Michael James Watson

Gangdis cleaves one of the jaguars head from its body, a confused look on his face as he sidesteps and grabs a warrior from the back of another jaguar, and throwing him into another rider and beast causing them to tumble. He steps closer to you. "REALMER!!!!"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

{Assault Strike!} Realmer thinks to his familiar and his artifacts. Bob releases a Lightning Bolt Spell that Realmer Racked there; a multi-forked stroke from the heavens striking multiple foes. The Ring releases a Fountain of Fire Spell at those directly in front of Realmer, possibly incinerating those in its range. At the same moment the Ring released it's spell, so did the Robe, a Grease Spell on the ground under those rushing Realmer. The Staff releases a Deep Freeze against those that are ganging up on Carston, slowing them severely if not freezing them in place. Realmer releases a Lightning Bolt Spell as well, again a multi-forked thing but this one shooting from his outstretched hand and striking all foes and jaguars but missing all friends and horses.

  • Michael James Watson

Lighting strikes among a collection of beasts and men singing them well but not slaying any. They look startled as further attacks land on them. Its rare they encounter such magic. The Fountain spell rages among those the lightning scared ones dropping a mixture of man and beast to the ground. The man on the beast last to arrive howls mystic commands.. The chilled ones in front of Carton lose their round and lose a rider and beast to sharp head strikes from behind a unpainted shield. A cloak moving like fabric smoke in the wind moves along the ground from the belly of a horse to slide behind a tree. From the other side flashes of black steal spikes fly true to the eyes of one of the beast, dropping one of the beasts. The group before you is sufficiently wounded to not take the time to further their own attacks.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer focuses on the newcomer howling mystic commands, he unleashes a Magic Drain Spell upon him, basically preventing his magic and spells from working.

  • Michael James Watson

since the effect he sent occurred immediately, and was not casting magic.

  • Michael James Watson

Realmer notes Gangdis fighting a pair of jaguars. Carston drops one man from a beast and cuts a beast mightily.

  • Michael James Watson

Tesa flows under her shadow cloak, seemly a matter of stage magic rather then actual magic, flowing over wounded men and beasts leaving dead ones behind

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Bob was in Albino Raven form initially, but it is now in its True Form of a Beholder, but enlarged to a bit bigger than a human head. From its aerial vantage point determines more help is needed so releases a spell meant to Conjure an Empowered Group of Monsters. They will be Invulnerable, Deadly Damage, Amber level Combat Skills, Tireless Stamina and Amber level Strength... a dozen Bugbear Corpses seemingly spring from the ground and begin attacking the enemies and their jaguars.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

(these are not actually undead, they are just conjured constructs meant to inspire fear and creepiness)

  • Michael James Watson

The bugbears dig into the beast mostly and the riders slay as they can, but the dozen pairs seem rather ravaged and damaged.

  • Michael James Watson

Carston seems most pressed but still holding his own. Gangdis steps clear and grabs a horses bridle and swings up into the seat. Tesa is not to be seen.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer hurls his Staff into the fray of men and beasts in front of Carston; it turns into a Displacer Beast... kind of looks undead. It begins attacking using hit and run/displace techniques

  • Michael James Watson

a piercing bell sounds and a shape falls out of the Well of Worlds and lands in a superhero three point pose.. Rising , a trio of Jaguars around his feet. Visions of hearts torn from chests appear. Grays ,gray feathers, a long obsidian knife in one hand, a staff slithering with snakes in the other.. a headdress that reeks of malice.

  • Michael James Watson

Tesa falls aside her cloak losing its shadow,, she pedals as he steps over to her, the obsidian knife falling.

  • Michael James Watson

a clink of black mithril scrapes along volcanic glass, making a screeching noise like the death of fire spirits..

  • Michael James Watson

Tesa seems to be parrying out of training, trembling in fear long forgotten

  • Michael James Watson

Gangdis leaps man and horse, two swords in his hands striking. Aztalios places the staff between him and the mounted Gangdis. His staff of snakes flowing to cover him and horse with writing snakes, biting, sucking, poisoning\

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer focuses on the new threat in a headdress and releases a Strength Drain Spell upon him and hopefully making him weak as a normal Human and the Ring hits him with a Paralysis Spell. Bob will unleash a Magic Missile Spell causing many tiny darts to strike Aztalios and explode upon impact.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

The Staff in Displacer Beast form and the Bugbears continue to help Carston and others in the area

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

The Robe releases a Bodily Defense Spell upon Realmer in anticipation of trouble; protects against all forms of physical and magic attacks, magic spells and effects, bio-hazards, poisons, etc.

  • Michael James Watson

“Amber blood......” Turning to stand facing, stepping clear of Tesa, forgotten. The writhing snakes forgotten though Gandsis pulls and snaps them in two with squeezes tossing the bodies aside. The battle of Elite and Snakes seems even. The headdress shivers from gray feathers to colorfully vivid ones as magic passes over him, harmlessly, he breathes in, colors inhaled like smoke as the feathers return to gray. Tendrils of testing Psyche toy at the edges of your perception. Carston runs and pulls Tesa back, her fragile psyche overwhelmed. His holding on by not much more. “.... and an Amber heart.... for the fire... for my powers.... What shall the Priests of the Unicorn put on your pale stone, pale one? Shall we parlay before battle? Or have they told you no secrets worth telling?”

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer recalls a gift from Xorit, a bag of marbles that turn into Ice Orcs.... the Robe slips the bag out of the left sleeve inner pocket and into Realmer's hand... tie already loosened. Realmer does not draw any marbles but does keep them in mind. Realmer braces his mind as he feels the touch of Aztalios' Psyche testing his own... he prepares for Psychic Battle... "What is there to talk about? You want my blood. You want my heart. You want to make a sacrifice in fire. What could I say that would sway your plans? You have attacked me and mine with deadly intent and I shall return in kind."

  • Michael James Watson

"You and yours ride the Road of Blood. Why would you not be fodder? But, the Jaguar cultists here picked merely an unsuspectingly stout foe. By summoning me their leader may have saved his life but will endure torment for his failure.. I've never met an Amberite. in the flesh... Only our diplomats go to Mandalay where the rebel Amberites wait.. Still, a second time i ask your name. "

  • Michael James Watson

Bob tells you that Carston has an small archery weapon aimed at the back of this thing's head

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"My name is Nobody. No. Baw. Dee." Realmer read the Oddessy and was impressed by some of Odysseus' simple trickery to defeat foes. Plus he does know there can be Power in Names. Bob's sent thought gets a fleeting 'not yet' but Realmer's mind seems very focused on Aztalios and what is about to happen next.

  • Michael James Watson

"NoBawDee? So that makes you an equal to all the others of your blood. Save possibly Brand. You think i work naming magic? No, i am not one of the subtle ones. I am not Mictlantecuhtli, who knows the powers of the way and holds all the heart-fires and knows the names of the living and the dead.. I am Aztalios, Warrior of the Jaguar, and I'll shall ask one more time. Parlay and your name."

  • Michael James Watson

"Show me your Sigil...and ill show you mine"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Now that I have your name I shall share my own; I am Lord Relmopator Barimen of Amber. And to see my sigil I must see your first."

  • Michael James Watson

Snakes flow off Gangdis, though may litter the ground below him and his horse

  • Michael James Watson

He nods. Turning he looks to Carston. He holds a very efficient looking large bore pistol in both hands...

  • Michael James Watson

Aztalios raises and eyebrow, turning back to you. 'not all of Amber depend on the sword i see. And i agree to your terms. Though...Sacrifice must be made yet." The snakes flow up to the staff which he swings to rest on his back, shrinking to cudgel size

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer does not summon his Staff back but leaves it to roam and protect as the Displacer Beast... the Bugbears stands at the ready... Bob floats above paying attention to everyone.

  • Michael James Watson

He turns quickly to the Cult leader. Stepping to him the obsidian knife slips in quickly, a popping sound follows and he steps back , knife dangling on a lanyard, beating heart in his palm. Turning to face you, heart in one hand beating.. He raises his other, the red yellow glow of the Sigil of Azcala appearing.. Your knowledge of the arts show he has a half dozen strong spells hung, though their bindings look old. two spells are active enough to need a small, probably mental Lynchpin.

  • Michael James Watson

"The sign of Azcala. The heart for my Lord Tonacat, Power for me. heart Fire for the God of the Underworld, Mictlantecuhtli"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer raises his right hand, the Sigil of the Pattern appears about his wrist like a band (think Dr. Strange); more than a dozen spells hung, all very powerful, all fresh, all with a hair trigger (lol). "The Sign of the Pattern, the Power of my Grandfather. Power for me and all my Kin."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"The terms of Parlay have been met; speak your piece, Aztalios."

  • Michael James Watson

"Peace? Piece? I was having a chola with pepper a few moments ago, my staff on my back, my snakes asleep, a service to be held in a few hours, and then this one called me. He failed his faith to seek hearts in my name and paid the price. His soul will dance in the dark halls till the Jubilee.. till the Red Sword raises us to bring temples of the heart to Amber. As for parlay, i merely wished to take this time to see what it is we fight. Tell your pistoleer that though he is bold to stand so, and has my respect for it, his weapon will only jar me, not harm me. "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"No need, you just did. And if you are wise, you will depart now and save us all a lot of blood and hassle. For we were just peacefully traveling the Jeweled Road, enjoying the evening and our own company when your men disturbed our pleasant travels. The Souls of all we have killed are MINE to do with as _I_ wish. Let us hope yours is not added to them."

  • Michael James Watson

"Pale.. Pale one.. Such a boast... If you dabble in souls you will find none here. They gave theirs to the Underworld long ago. Pray yours does not join them. " Lowering his sigil, the heart erupts in fire, quickly consumed. He seems to inhale the smoke and puff his chest.. Looking to each of your group he kneels by the leader, his belt slithers up Azt's arm. He pulls a pair of bracers from his wrists and a chain form his neck..

  • Michael James Watson

He slides the obsidian blade in his sheath..

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Damn Looting Bastard, Realmer thinks to himself

  • Michael James Watson

'These others have trinkets. I shan't contest your right to them. Their leaders i keep. His family will undoubted wish to know his failure since they will pay his price as well

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Fair enough." Realmer says without emotion.

  • Michael James Watson

"There are many places Amber and Azcala do not yet war. Perhaps we shall share Chola there one day.. til then, the Well of Worlds awaits. He steps off the road and a circular hole appears. He steps over and into it, falling., the hole closes behind him

  • Michael James Watson

Carston walks to a wounded beast, his pistol erupting, putting its misery at an end. He does the same to another.

  • Michael James Watson

Carston-"The horses we can save, but i didn't think we wanted pet jaguars?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer pulls the drawstring tight on the bag of Ice Orc marbles and puts them back up his sleeve pocket. Realmer commands the Staff/Displacer Beast to help Carston in killing the wounded. "Correct. But perhaps the meat would be useful. Take what you want from them and divide it amongst yourselves" he says looking over the bodies with his Pattern Vision, his sigil still up, for any magic items for traps/spells on the bodies.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer will also pull out flasks with Healing Potions and jars with Healing Poultices he made himself for his wounded companions. If needed, he may loan Satura's Ring for Regeneration if it is really needed.

  • Michael James Watson

The bracers appear magic, not powerful. Each the men and beasts shared a similar ear piercing.

  • Michael James Watson

Tesa- "Well, what by the fuuken gods of the seas was that guy?"

  • Michael James Watson

Carston-"These are Bracers of ACO. Something like them.. I wear a set myself though mine are of Yorkian magic. We shouldn't wear these till they are purified someplace.. Not much else.. "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"The matching earrings, man and beast are also magic... linked most likely."

  • Michael James Watson

Gangdis-"Communication items.. There are a lot of those out toward the center.. They should be purified too though.. Ill pass on all of that. Carston or if you or Tesa, want the coin those bracers might bring, I'll recoup you."

  • Michael James Watson

Tesa-"No thanks.. anything making you folks nervous is above my pay grade"

  • Michael James Watson

Gang-"Well, Sir, i suggest we start a common pyre and get on toward the waymet.. We've lost some times and frazzled some nerves.. And i could use several drinks"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"I'm sure I could purify them, but I'm not sure it's worth the effort. And I will cover any value lost myself. Now if needed. And yes, a pyre is a good idea. Let us make haste, I think we could all use a drink or two, besides these." Realmer hands out potions to each as he knows each took some sort of damage.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

The Bugbears collect the bodies and put them in a pile then disappear at Realmer's command. The Displacer Beast becomes a small Fire Drake and breaths fire onto the pyre of bodies until they are all cooking nicely.

  • Michael James Watson

Gangdis. "Very well, then lets take the magic and burn the rest. We can't leave possibly dangerous magic items just laying around for anyone to find."

  • Michael James Watson

Tesa is impressed, not used to being around such displays of magic

  • Michael James Watson

Carston looks over the horse, calming them, Cloaking their eyes,seeing to the healing. with you

  • Michael James Watson

"Lets take them slow for a bit.. till they forget all this fire..."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer pets the Fire Drake which turns back into a Scrimshawed Staff. He moves to the horses and applies healing salves and calms them with simple Compellings if needed

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Bob remains floating/flying above the group in Beholder form so he has more eyes to see what is going on and warn of danger if needed. Realmer will float/fly using the Robe if needed and leave the most injured/damaged horse to walk unencumbered.

The Great Arch of Adagalasck and The Reunion or The Severance

  • Michael James Watson

The next few days pass without incident. The last night passes in a waymet run by what almost appear like Neanderthals. Their cliff dwellings bordering the waymet turnout. Their fare meats and vegetables one takes from the fire. Though they seem to have plenty of barrels of hard potent whiskey that are clearly a trade-good they got. Their communication skills are good, since they do a lot of Road Trade.. but they don't know, or are willing to tell, much about the narrows JR up to the Adagalasck Gate. They say few take the trail and they don't encourage them.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer asks why they don't encourage them, what is wrong with that part of the JR? He will offer coin for information or other goods they may wish, if they have them or he can Conjure them.

  • Michael James Watson

"Armies come. Armies go. Your people. They harm us not. Pay us. We not want to be your foes. We guard the place, we speak at Rue Katal to own this place for them. We don't want your people to put the armies here and make us... go back into the woods.. "

  • Michael James Watson

They clearly like the whiskey. Carston tries it and coughs, while laughing.

  • Michael James Watson

Tesa takes some and couches... "I've had worse at Thin Whip's..Not much worse"

  • Michael James Watson

Gangdis doesn't blink an eye and drinks. happily tossing goldwings in their pay barrel

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer asks the Neanderthal "My people? Do you mean those with eyes like mine? Or do you mean those that come from that direction along the Jeweled Road?" He points back towards Amber.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer tries the whiskey as well, so as to not insult anyone. He overpays with goldwings and buys some for the road even if it is horrible.

  • Michael James Watson

he nods, "Your people, up Adagalasck. East to Amber. Random's people. Next Waymet west, Rue Katal Beyond, the Green People of Mandalay.. Up in the hills, the land wives and the smalls. We men run the Waymet"

  • Michael James Watson

The whiskey is Plain Wrap. Nothing special, hard..

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"I bring no armies and do not wish to put you off this land. I only seek knowledge." Realmer thanks the man and pays for his time with a few more goldwings.

  • Michael James Watson

The rest areas are leather covered but open. and the kegs are open all night.

  • Michael James Watson

Gangdis and Carston end up sitting by the Neanderthals fires, singing and laughing.. listening to the Neanderthal jokes..

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer will keep the group together but continue to ask around and learn what they can. He will use a Spell for Lodgings that will fit in locally, but be much bigger and more opulent on the inside... if there are not lodgings available.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer will send Bob, shape shifted into a local bird so as to blend in, along the narrow JR in the direction of the blockade for a bit of scouting.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer will also take the time to read the Environment with his Psyche and Pattern if needed; good to know what works and does not and time ratios and such

  • Michael James Watson

Tesa seems unconcerned ad settles int to the common sleeping areas. There seem to be no other guests

  • Michael James Watson

pattern and sorcery both work. though there is a sense of great power up the trail

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer will focus in the direction of the great power and ascertain what he can at this distance

  • Michael James Watson

Its a lesser power then Amber, but it feels that it was made for a very different purpose

  • Michael James Watson

In time the morning comes

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer rises early and gets the group going quickly. Now that he is this close he is less likely to tarry. He will keep Bob on scout out ahead and keep his wits and senses about him as they travel.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Also, Realmer would have reracked and rehung the used spells, or as many as he could manage, before he went to sleep.

  • Michael James Watson

Leading up the narrow divide to the top of the col, it leads to a long path across a highland plain, far above the JR...

  • Michael James Watson

Coming to a Arched gateway. The arch is 100' of diameter above a flat approach. Beyond it is more cold highland, but through the arch is a dark night sky. Near the arch is an army of tents.. Easily a thousand.. and the activity looks very military though not in an Amber way.. Somewhat Scottish, Disorganized.

  • Michael James Watson

But still in a way professional.

  • Michael James Watson

While you are a ways out you are spotted unless you tried to hide at first sight of the arch and camp.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Had not expected an army, but not sure hiding or invisibility will help. Keeps traveling towards the arch as they he belongs there.

  • Michael James Watson

A foursome of horseman ride out. As they come a ways they stop, raise a hailing hand.. One rides forward.

  • Michael James Watson

"Hail.. Ware the camp below andst you have token of passage? "Hail.. Ware the camp below andst thou have a token of passage?” The warrior guard looks well armed in horseman's scale armor, lance, kite shield and sword. Racially her looks human with perhaps a bit of Adask gray in his past. His colors are brown and blue. Behind him 3 serious looking guardsman on fine horses. Their stance is aware, alert, not not particularly worried.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer holds his hand up for this group to halt and he also rides forward a bit to address the rider. "What type of 'token' do you seek? Is it a toll or fee that you are looking for? Or do you seek something specific from the Realm I wish to enter?" Realmer is wearing Satura's Ring openly on the middle finger of his right hand. He also has the Pattern Attuned Adagalasck Stone in his pocket.

  • Michael James Watson

The guard's casual stance stiffens a bit. Not aggressively, just bringing weapons a bit closer to draw, lances to level. “Do you think your outworld gold enough to sway us from our duty? Does you clan see its guard so cheaply that outworld gold can buy it? Or has your time outworld changed you so deeply? “ You note he has not given any regard to your entourage and the guards seem only to consider them as targets at best, though clearly not dangerous ones

  • Michael James Watson

The army seems to be going about its business, in the early morning. a large contingent forms up to the east of the arch, officers moving among them. They seem forming up for drill as half the army forms ranks and heads away from the other. Two of the guards look to the army. One says “Reniks cadre and Xorit's Cadre.. There green on Xorit for three of 5 clashes” The other nods, “Done and sealed. Ale will be on you brother” The spokesman turns briefly, making a chuk noise that brings the guards heads around. From the army a trio gray and green dragon the size of small sailing ships rise and fly off to Xorit's side. A trio of red and black rise from elsewhere and fly to land by Renik's forces. Tesa's breath intakes in surprise.... “Dragons! Really dragons!!” She slaps Gangdis, who is less impressed.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer looks slightly taken aback at their offense. "I was not trying to buy you off or bribe you, I was merely asking a question as to the nature of the token you require for me to enter." Realmer looks slightly annoyed as he glances down at his hands and sees Satura's Ring upon his finger, his eyes narrow slightly. He holds up his right hand, palm towards him so the ring can be easily seen. The ring is in it primary form, the one it was in when he received it, a simple gold band with a brick design. "Perhaps this is more of what you were asking for."

  • Michael James Watson

"No, though it is a nice ring. If you don't have a token then I'll summon a Praetor. You are Adask but have no clan stone? How far your family must have strayed. Are you here for the Reunion or The Severing? "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"A Clan Stone? Perhaps I do have one" Realmer says as he draws out the stone Arlo gave him and shows it to the spokesman. "And yes, I have been away from my mother's kin for a long time. Reunion and Severing of whom?"

  • Michael James Watson

He rides forward, looking, looking up a look of growing anger in his face. “I see.... May I have it for a moment please?” Taking it, he rubs hi hands over it warming it, the look that he knows what he will learn on his face. Pressing it to his lips.. he closes his eyes. Turning to his guard, he shakes the stone at them. They nod and turn, start riding casually over to where spectators for the battle drill are assembling on a low rising slope with good views of the battle. “No token, is it? Your Mother's kin? indeed? Tell your Lady that Clan Shaxta stands firm in its Guard. She need not tempt us with outworld gold, though it is her right to try. Tell her we did not stray. Now, when the arch guard asks if you have a token, feel free to try your gambit again. Clan Kalota guards the Arch gateway today.” Tossing the stone to you, he haws his horse left and gallops off to join his companions.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer looks over his right shoulder to his companions and shrugs his shoulders then turns and looks towards the arch and continues forward, giving his team a hand gesture to follow. He keeps the stone handy but also draws out the bag of ice marbles given to him by Xorit, perhaps that might be a better token to get him through the archway.

  • Michael James Watson

As you come up, a guards man asks for your token. Showing him one of the marbles, he nods. “Your clan has the morning battle. I'm taking bets should you care to place for your clansmen. Trixta is the favorite though. Xorit has won his last two battles. Shaxta's Renik is leading his cadre for the first time this Turning. So the odds are in your clansman's favor im afraid. You won't get better then 3 to 2 from anyone. The battles near 20 minutes yet. Plenty of time to reach the Viewing Hill. If not, pass on. The Arch Guard will see you though the passage.”

  • Michael James Watson

Tesa mumbles.. "And they don't like out-world gold? Figures id find opportunity and not be able to bet.. Well, maybe on the way out...

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"If Xorit himself is fighting then I shall place a bet on him to win. And I shall stay to watch." Realmer turns to look at Tesa and says "I'm sure at least one of my companions would enjoy watching the dragons fight."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"And I'm sure we can find something they would find of value to bet with."

  • Michael James Watson

'No Gem coins? Ah.. Been out out world a long time ah? Well, I I'll not shear an incomer. Reunion of Severing however you side. I'll take a 3 Green on Xorit for credit if you like. Lets discuss it on the way. Looks like no more incomers for a while.

  • Michael James Watson

He turns and rides toward the battle zone

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer follows and gestures for his companions to follow as well. "I have been away from my mother's kin for a very long time and out of communication as well. For whom are the reunion and the severing?"

  • Michael James Watson

“Well, yes, you must have been outworld a long time! Damn man, Trixta and Shaxta. The Book Lord of the West Stair is overseeing it. Hagalta declared Reunion for Shaxta over Trixta. The Book Lord bound them. Xorit refused the Reunion. The Book Lord called for battle to Severance. This battle is the last drill. The battle will be on the War Plain before the West Stair once the Stair Lords can get their schedules right. “

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Your information is appreciated, thank you. Would it be possible for me to send a message to Xorit before the battle drill begins? I would like to speak with him after the drill, if possible."

  • Michael James Watson

"Well, the battle is nigh. Ride hard, Ill see your companions to the field. "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"I am unknown here and do not wish to cause a commotion by racing across the plain; perhaps it can wait until after the drills. And in regards to the Gem Coins... perhaps I can sell you a few bottles of my strongest ale so that I and my companions can have some local currency to bet with." Realmer pulls a bottle out of his robes and uncorks it and allows the man to smell it and sample if he likes.

  • Michael James Watson

"You've passed the last guard till the Arch Guard. As long as you don't rain arrows on the spectators no one will bother delay you. "

  • Michael James Watson

Tesa, "Ah, Liege, if you don't mind, let me negotiate for the local coinage. Its my ...well, yes.. You seek your kinsman"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer smiles and passes a couple of bottles to Tesa "In case you need them." Then he nods to his companions and heads in the direction of Xorit's Cadre. He keeps Bob with him, flying overhead in the form of an Albino Raven. He will ride hard, as advised, having Bob direct his path from overhead to avoid 'traffic jams' and such.

  • Michael James Watson

As you ride you mix in with the crowd, on foot and on horse, as the jostle for room. You note the place the Trixta forces are forming. Watching you see Xorit, talking to commanders as they move to and fro among the troops. He seems to be laughing at something as the commanders move away.. There are clearly referees on the sides of the huge battle plain. The forces look evenly matched, nearly a thousand a side. Support troops, waterbearers, healers, wait at the back for the mock battle. You note, despite your warfare stat, that they are clearly using blunt weapons and training swords. Xorit waits at the back, watching

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer dismounts and approaches Xorit openly but slowly, cautiously. He has Bob fly down and land on his right shoulder, he carries his Scrimshawed Staff in his left hand using it as a walking staff. He makes sure Xorit sees him and acknowledges him before approaching.

  • Michael James Watson

Xorit smiles, "It can only be the strangest of coincidences or the finest of preparations that brings you here at this time. I can't have you battle with me this day but i would consider it a a pleasure if you would take a seat in the clan box. Somewhere where Hagalta can see it. It may do nothing but it may also distract him substantially. Of course if you come to tell me you have made cause with the Reunion, then go yee yon to the Shaxta box and we will see how the battle proceeds on the War Plain"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"If my mother is still being held against her will by Hagalta then I will most certainly not be siding with him." Realmer smiles a friendly smile to Xorit and continues, "I would be honored to sit in your Clan Box, right up front if you can arrange it" Realmer chuckles. "And though I have heard the news of the Reunion and the Severing, and who is involved, I am unfamiliar with what they are and their significance. And I did hear that you are against the Reunion so something tells me I will be opposed to it as well."

  • Michael James Watson

“I would imagine.. Then yes.. Take this. 'Handing you a stone of clear green on a leather thong. “Wear it, they'll let you into the box. Shaxta and trixta came from a common clan long ago. He's gained enough support to declare himself a Stair Lord.. he controls a Stair. A region, and suitable forces. By declaring himself suitable married, holder of a Stair, as well as already being Master of the South Wind and Master of Stone, he demands Trixta be united to him. If he is victorious, which damn him he may, the Reunion will be complete, he will claim the title Stair Lord, and many of us will find ourselves at knife point. Or worse.. Side with me, battle on the War Plain, and My clan will do all it can to rend his marriage from him.” He nods to a referee and starts to move forward.. Turning, “You come from Amber... Do you have warriors somewhere in shadow?”

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer takes the proffered 'necklace' and dons it proudly. "After the drill we can discuss matters in detail. I do have some powerful allies that have said they would assist me if needed... and I may be able to round up some troops from Shadow, but nothing I have currently prepared. I could also conjure up some specialized troops as well."

  • Michael James Watson

"no magic is slowed on the war fields. but we shall speak anon"

  • Michael James Watson

Taking a seat in the box the others look you over with surprise, the thonged token inciting no question. A few near you greet you and introduce themselves but their attention is clearly on the battle.. Your attire is distinctly unlike the others in this realm and that alone gets him attention.

  • Michael James Watson

The battle is called and begins.. The fighting is fierce. you note much of it is honor based, a strike of a certain power counts.. The battle swirls.

  • Michael James Watson

You see Hagalta riding hard, ordering troops, taking a few swings but standing in the stirrups to issue orders.

  • Michael James Watson

Beside you, out of the box you hear Gangdis, "Realmer.. He stands to battle well, that leader. You know him?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Without taking his eyes off the battle Realmer responds, "Yes, his name is Hagalta; and we do not want him to do well. He is the one that holds my mother." Realmer says the last as a quiet hiss.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer tells Bob to Shape Shift into his Beholder form and float several feet over his head... so he can have a better vantage of the battle.

  • Michael James Watson

Gangdis.. "I see.. " A box-usher opens the gate. "If this is your man, Lord he can enter."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer looks to Gangdis and gives him a head nod to join him. "I would appreciate your tactical advice on the battle, both sides, please."

  • Michael James Watson

Gangdis steps in, watching with more interest then you've seen in him. As a bottle is passed from viewer to viewer you note him take one and pass it on untouched. "They mix their cavalry close.. It presses the infantry forward.. If they train for that in mock battles he must have a problem with maintaining morale in live battle. Xorit's forces don't do that..."

  • Michael James Watson

Gangdis, “He leads well. Watches the battle, knows where his sub-commanders are, where the foe commanders are.. They have battle signs. If this battle lasts much longer I'll have them” The battle sways left and right and Hagalta is in the mix. Xorit comes by the box and is cheered as the battle swirls away. As the battle swirls back, Hagalta presses back an attack near the box edge. He snaps his head to you. Ordering a sub-commander to lead the battle inward, he brings the horse to the front of the box before you. “You defy your father before his troops and among these Trixta who defy the Binding? At this place of all things? Leave the field now. Meet me at my camp after the battle. Your mother will be there. If you defy me in this, I shall keep her from you till the other three Windlords demand I relent. Since I am one of the Windlords that may be the length of your life”

  • Michael James Watson

a spectator beside you, a clearly military Adask beside you presses his hand on your shoulder after Gangdis's comment on morale. "Young Lord! Your military adviser has a fine eye. Many an Adask warlord would never note that Hagalta's forces do not fight for him for love. They fight from fear. Hagalta is not kind to commanders who fail him.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer stands, as though he is preparing to leave the box, but instead rises up into the air just enough to bring them eye to eye on the level. "You are not my father, regardless of your marriage to my mother. Nor are you my commander or king; I owe no fealty or obligation to you. And I will gladly join you in your camp after the battle, but only after I have viewed it to its conclusion. I know you hold my mother and threaten to hold her forever to leverage me, but I feel you intend to hold her forever regardless." Realmer floats back down into his seat and he returns his attention to the battle, seeing if Hagalta's absence has had an effect on matters.

  • Michael James Watson

He scowls, looks to the man on your left, “And you.. When the Reunion is confirmed, your head will decorate a pike. You are beyond the Arch now. Take the road out-world and ill leave your family among the living.” He pulls the horse hard toward the battle and runs toward it. The man laughs... “So young Lord. He lacks many things but not arrogance. On a side matter, if your adviser ha truly gotten the Shaxta battle sign from such a short battle, I'll give him, or you, 100 Blue Stone to have it taught to me. Its long been a secret. I've seen him battle a thousand times, and stood in battle against him a dozen times in drill and red war, and never caught them”

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer glances to the man on his left, to get a facial reference for later, then returns his attention to the battle. "After the battle we can discuss the matter, but as you certainly heard, I have a prior engagement... two actually. But once those meetings are completed, I shall send word or seek you out."

  • Michael James Watson

he nods. "I heard. If you want an honor guard to the Shaxta camp I'm sure i can probably only get two, or three.. hundred people willing to come along. " He extends his hand "Zarxit, Clan Trixta War Holder. My brother is Xorit. You are the first person I've seen wear that necklace that i didn't already know."

  • Michael James Watson

Gangdis "Got it.. "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer smiles widely and claps Gangdis on the shoulder. "Well done, thank you." Then Realmer turns to his other side and says, "Well met. I am Lord Relmopator Barimen, son of Satura. Xorit and I have only met once, many years ago, but it seems we share similar viewpoints on some things."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"And I may take you up on the Honor Guard to help bolster the team I have with me... couldn't hurt."

  • Michael James Watson

"son of....you're the Amberite son he brags about... and in Trixta's box defying him? If only the Book Lord's terms precluded slaying him anywhere other then the sanctified War Plain. Yes, feel free to call on that honor guard.. I doubt he will harm you but he will have an army at his back regardless, in his own camp. Such an honor guard will probably not need to worry about battle, but pageantry. " Looking to the battle.. "It seems even still."

  • Michael James Watson

Gangdis-"Its even, for a few more minutes. Then we'll see. Shaxta has the Foot and the center. Xorit the Horse and the far right, The odds for a Shaxta victory just became very long one. I wouldn't bet a basket of goldwings against a bushel of taters for a Shaxta victory". The War holder looks at Gangdis with interest, then back to the battle.. watching, he nods... "Yes... long odds indeed."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer takes his eyes off the battle to look at Zarxit when he says, "Step son. As far as my memory serves me, Hagalta is not my father." He returns his gaze to the battle. "I will have to learn more about the Adask culture and ways, the knowledge will be invaluable. And you should trust my Advisor's assessment for I am not the only member of the Royal Family that trusts his tactical advise." Edited

  • Michael James Watson

The battle continues, and the closer to the end the battle clearly anchors on the right and the Horse press the foot who fight to the end, having no place to go braced from behind from the horse. Gangdis-”Mock fights.. They are taking less sturdy strikes then they did at the beginning of the battle. Get out while the getting is good I guess” Zar nods-”Won't save them. A defeat at this stage is a major embarrassment. Its that last battle chance to sway neutrals before the big fight. Just the Presentation of Champions the week before the battle left to get them to chose sides.. There will be floggings when you go visit Hagalta”

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"And I am sure he will make sure I see them. I may not know Hagalta well, but I him well enough to know what he is capable of and why. I will definitely take you up on the Honor Guard, Zarxit. And Gangdis, when his fight is over, make sure to bring the others, I want everyone in attendance for this meeting in Hagalta's Camp. I am hoping for a few words with Xorit before the meeting as well..." he let's it trail off as he watches the end of the battle and the reactions of Hagalta at his loss.

  • Michael James Watson

Zar leans over to his other side, whisperers to a young man, clearly a follower of some kind. Two of them leave immediately.

  • Michael James Watson

Zarxit-"I've sent word to Xorit. If you are inclined you should seek him out now. We were not expected to win this round so i imagine he will be in a good mood. Ill see to a few select colorful guests in the honor guard. it should be entertaining. at the very least."

  • Michael James Watson

As the crowd thins and exits,, Carston and Tesa are a ways out of the press with the horses. Carston on foot, Tesa mounted.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer let's Gangdis gather up Carston and Tesa while he makes haste, floating quickly through the crowds to meet up with Xorit. Bob, as a Beholder, floating above and behind him.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

When Realmer reaches Xorit, he quickly informs him of the conversation he and Hagalta had during the battle, his talk with Zarxit and his plan to take a Honor Guard to the meeting in Hagalta's Camp.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

He also tells Xorit that Gangdis broke Shaxta's Battle Signals, with a big grin

  • Michael James Watson

Xorit listens till he hears it all. Though his commanders crowd around celebrating. You note after a few moments that while you sent Gangdis to get with Carston, but he seems to have taken that as a suggestion rather then an order.

  • Michael James Watson

when you tell Xorit about the battle sign he raises a hand for silence and steps away, bring you and having hi body guards keep the other celebrants away

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer sends Bob to bring Carston and Tesa to him, via Teleportation/Trump Power if needed. And while about it see if Gangdis can be located.

  • Michael James Watson

Xorit takes you back to a campaign tent, clearly in the well defended part of their camp. Celebrants congratulate;at him along the way and he is smiles and clasps arms often. you sense he is trying to get to his tent but can't pass up some of his clan no matter how important the matter is. He introduces you as Realmer but nothing else and deflects any attempt to inquire of you further. this often include taking mugs and sharing them..in order to move along.

  • Michael James Watson

Despite guards and crowds you notice Gangdis keeping within a dozen yards at all times.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

When they arrived at the campaign tent, Realmer will make eye contact with Gangdis and will make a head gesture for him to come inside the tent as well. He will also make mental contact with Bob to check on his progress of bringing the others to him.

  • Michael James Watson

when you reach the tent Gangdis is less then 10 feet from the door, having moved well ahead of the two of you

  • Michael James Watson

bob says Carston and Tesa and the horses are on the periphery of the camp. The guard that sent you along to the box is with them, clearly drunk.

  • Michael James Watson

Xorit enters the tent, noticing the business with Gangdis waves him past the guards as well.

  • Michael James Watson

Xorit-"Well that was a lot of information to get in one burst.. Lets retrace it a bit. Hagalta demanded you attend him or else.. He threatened Zaro and his family. And your man here broke the Shaxta battle signs during one battle drill on his first time seeing Adask fight? Now Zar wants to lead a parade to Hagalta's tent. That about right?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer grins like an evil little child left alone. "Yes, that sums it up nicely. And I can understand your doubt about Sir Gangdis' abilities, but even Amber's Marshall of the Army, among others, trusts his abilities."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"I wanted to let you know what had transpired and what is about to. And also see if perhaps you would like to get in on the fun or if you have any advice before I go to this meeting with Hagalta."

  • Michael James Watson

xor-"My advice is to go to the arch and enter the realm before he know you have done so. He undoubtedly lied about Satura being here. If she was he would have been brandishing her like a banner. She is a big part of rationale for the Reunion. That her subservience is somehow the support of Amber. That Amber, because of him, will come to defend Ada.... against the Azcalan Wargod and his army that now hold a stair in Genia. If she was here, she would have been in his clan box watching. "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Agreed. Hagalta seems the type to show off his trophies at every opportunity; since there was no sign of Satura, she is not here. Then to the Arch we must go. Thank you for your advice, Xorit; you may have saved me a grave mistake. Any other advice? And where or how can I reach you once on the other side?"

  • Michael James Watson

"Once you are in the land.. Those stones.. Call one up and have it contact me. That will do. Two things.. If you don't mind, id like to have Zar lead that Honor guard to Hagalta to inform him that you won't be able to meet him. It should take a couple hours if i do it right and he will let it come. Its the pageantry of it.. It will annoy him immensely. Second... Your man seems a bit ragged. He somehow broke the Shaxta battle signs?"

  • Michael James Watson

Gangdis smiles. “Son, I've been a warrior since Oberon had the great idea to marry a priestess. And I was an Amber Elite when I slapped the fire Queen of Amber. I had a good angle and no one was trying to kill me while I watched. Here. Look these over:“ He makes a series of hand movements. “Horse to the Left. Cohort One to the middle. Cohort Two to the left. Command Horse B wall the infantry from retreat. Command Horse C hit Foeman command Unit. Infantry A Charge. Infantry B shift left. Horse B advance in column. I have no idea what you call those things but thse are the hand signs and that's what happened. I've another hundred signs at least and give me a day or so and ill work out the grammar. “ Xor has him go through them again.. Shakes his head. “I've seen all those moves..Yes.. Call me once you can Realmer. We have much to discuss. “

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"I certainly will contact you, soon. And hopefully before the actual battle; I know it would be very useful to both of our causes for Hagalta to lose. And by all means, send Zarxit and his honor guard; I would love to annoy Hagalta and buy me and mine more time" he finishes with a smile. As he is about to turn away he says "Would you mind taking a look at this?" And pulls out the stone Arlo gave him, the Stone he Walked the Pattern with.

  • Michael James Watson

He extends his hand and holds it..

  • Michael James Watson

Xorit, though its hard to tell with his wrinkled gray skin, pales.

  • Michael James Watson

"I am rarely surprised and less often surprised. This is not a thing you should wave about. Has anyone here seen this? "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"One guard when I first arrived and now you and your men here. The guard seemed to think I was trying to pass off a fake token."

  • Michael James Watson

"It would be a foolish fake to try. Any one having the authority to ask for a passage token would recognize it immediately. This is a Stair Key. More then that, its a Stair Key to the Varci Stair, the home of Lady of Water. Mistress of the cold wind of the north. It gives you passage into the realm at the Arch, and transport to the base of the Stair. Then entrance to the Stair and then it would set a course to the Lady of Water herself, no matter what defenses she set.. Whoever....I have no idea how this ever left the realm or how you come to have it. "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"A gift from a member of the other side of my family. If I may ask, does this Lady of Water go by any other name?"

  • Michael James Watson

"Well she has thousands of names depending on which religions group you speak to about here. But two things. She is one of the four Winds, The others being Hagalta, Horse Lord Trualta of the East Wind, and Archmage Emiliesa of the South Wind. For your the names that you should care about are Nina and Emilie, daughters of Oberon"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"As I suspected. Cousins of mine. Well, it seems I am here for Family Business, both sides."

  • Michael James Watson

"Someone other then us know you have this. You need to get beyond the arch immediately. If Hagalta got his hands on that it would lead him through her defenses.. She could be slain and one of his companions take the Wind and her Stair. you may not even be able to get to the Arch now.. "

  • Michael James Watson

Gangdis-"Its a marker for an Amberite? Am I right, Realmer?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Correct, Gangdis."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Xorit, send the honor guard now, give Hagalta something to focus on for the moment. I can have my familiar teleport us to it, then all of us to the Arch. We should be able to pass through if we are quick."

  • Michael James Watson

Xorit nods at a soldier leaves in a hurry

  • Michael James Watson

Gangdis whispers -"Arloxedra gave that to you? Can the stone contact her? Activate her trump?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer reaches over and politely takes the stone back from Xorit and nods to Gangdis. "Yes. And possible. Perhaps I should try it." Realmer whispers back.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer begins by simply focusing on the Stone with his Psyche. If no results he will pull her Trump card from his sleeve, the one given by Julian and touch Stone to Trump then check the Trump for coolness.

  • Michael James Watson

the stone is clearly psyche reactive. But it does not do anything particular from the probing. Touching the stone to the trump you feel an immediate presence. A trump contact but an odd feeling one

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Odd, how? What does it feel like? Does it feel like an assault? Does it feel like there is more than one mind or psyche present?

  • Michael James Watson

no. it feels soft.. and though there is no source your olfactory senses smell jasmine and mint, gin and ice

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer holds up a hand to Gangdis, giving him the 'just a minute' gesture, so he won't be interrupted. He then says mentally, "My name is Relmopator; grandson of Dworkin, son of Satura." He braces for a Psychic Assault or attack of some kind.

  • Michael James Watson

"Julian? Where are you? ah... You....Realmer...Dworkin? I see... How did you get Julian's card for me? "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"He gave it to me in the hope I would contact you when I arrived in Adagalasck. He sends his regards and wanted me to tell you that Caine and he are well, survived Patternfall, and to bid you come to Amber. Oberon is gone and Random is a different kind of king. He might be amendable. Nearly his exact words. I am not in Adagalasck yet, just outside the Arch."

  • Michael James Watson

'Pull me across to you"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"As you request" Realmer says and extends a hand and pulls her though when he feels her take his hand.

  • Michael James Watson

A dainty hand touches you and steps forward. Short, just over 5'. braided purple hair and deep blue skin in a gossamer gown.


  • Michael James Watson

Xorit stands, the others in the room stand, at attention in profound shock

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer bows respectfully while her hand is still in his and kisses it gently then releases her hand and stands.

  • Michael James Watson

She steps forward, invading your personal space.. "Julian is well? We know Patternfall was won by amber.. of course.. but we little travel beyond our world.. This is the first time I've been beyond the arch... You... you have my stone? I gave that to Oberon should he wish to contact me.. though he never did... "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer smoothly floats to the side as she encroaches into his personal space bubble, giving her room to move about. "Yes, Lady Nina, Julian is well; I spoke with him just a few days ago in Amber; he and Gangdis here" he indicates Gan with a fluid hand gesture "joined me for drinks and conversation. That is when he bid me contact you and send his regards. And yes, I have your stone. I came to me by way of another of the Amber Royal Family; Arloxedra, son of Eric. Though Oberon never visited, I would like to; I wish to learn more about my Family, both sides. My Adask heritage is new knowledge to me."

  • Michael James Watson

she looks, fey, ethereally, at Gangdis.. "Gany? Oh.. Gany?!? Is it really you?" She steps over and embraces him and he lifts her by the waist as she deeply kisses him. Xorit and the other inhale deeply in shock.. several dropping to their knees.. a few more moments later.

  • Michael James Watson

Gan-"Ahk little one, You'll make Julian challenge me to a duel and you know i would hate to embarrass him in front of you after all this time"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer simply arches an eyebrow and watches the joyous reunion.

  • Michael James Watson

she steps over and places a hand on your arm.. "Its a pleasure to be among the living again.. Oh look! You have Adask fellows with you.. Are they your warriors, young Adask lord? An Amberite Adask should have Adask entourage.. I do so enjoy mine.. oh wait.. you ... You are Odaraxta Adask.. Trixta ....oh.... oh yes.. That makes you Xorit of the Trixta. oh... yes.. The Book Lords mess. focus.. focus.. focus.. Hagalta is here as well. And his wife is within.. and this is entirely his doing isn't it? His claim for Reunion? Though."

  • Michael James Watson

she look about, seeming to firm up, as if awareness returns after a long sleep.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer smiles at her touch and her initial excitement, but worries as she focuses on the particulars. He is unsure if he should respond first or wait of Xorit...

  • Michael James Watson

Xorit is wide eyed and stunned to be named by one of his goddesses

  • Michael James Watson

Nina-"Yes.. Yes.. Let us return.. Lord Xorit.. You have beaten Hagalta in the bouts i see, 5 of 8. Hagalta challenges two of the victories and the book lord reads on.. Xorit, you may bring 10 with you. Young Realmer, you have an entourage that is actually yours i assume? Summon them immediately. Gan turns and runs out to get Carston and Tesa. We must be within the Arch before Hagalta knows i am beyond it. My portal is ready to the space beyond, in the realm.. Trixta---I give you my blessings to hold the Gate against all till one of the I say otherwise. If Hagalta wishes to pass let him try. I shall lock him out. "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer was not fast enough to stop Gangdis, though he did reach to grab him, so he sends a thought to Bob to quickly lead Carston and Tesa towards Gangdis and the Campaign Tent they are in. "They will be here post haste, Lady Nina. Thank you for your interest and your hospitality."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer sends a second thought to Bob to Teleport the lot of them to the tent once they are all together... if he can manage it.

  • Michael James Watson

"Hospitality? It may seem such. But its been long since i stood to battle. But then my husband sends you our personal trump.. I shall trust him in his choices. "

  • Michael James Watson

Carston and Tesa appear with Bob. Carston says something about the horses but one of the Xorit says they will tend them till they can be brought safely beyond. Tesa is wide eyed but traveling light, she left nothing on her horse'

  • Michael James Watson

Nina turns and opens a gate.. Xorit nods and his obvious intimates come to him. 10 in all. fumbling to grab gear and weapons.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer is always packed, his team as ready as it can be, he leads them through...

  • Michael James Watson

she wave to the gate. Xorit, clearly unhinged by the turn of events, but seeing a chance to achieve the Severance waits on your passage

  • Michael James Watson

Xorit follows you through.. his people with him.

  • Michael James Watson

Beyond the gate it is dark night. sunlight on the other side

  • Michael James Watson

in the distance Hagalta is mounted and charging quickly to the gateway. Nina waves and a white sheen appears at the boundary, fading clear.. Hagalta stops on the other side. Yelling.. slamming the boundary.. Staring at you in anger.. He slowly points a finger at you, eyes wide

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer simply makes eye contact with Hagalta through the barrier, no expression on his face nor gesture made in his direction.

  • Michael James Watson

Leaping to the ground after bashing it from horseback, he pounds on the barrier again and again. Stepping back he locks eyes with you. Reaching behind him, under the cloak the draws out a long wide blade.. He raises it in the air and shouts something.. Stopping, lowering the blade. He shows you the archer butt symbol on its pommel. Farslayer. He steps back. Sheathing the blade.. Leaping to the horseback he rides of toward his camp, away from view.

Adagalasck, the Adask and Ninaaratres; Mistress of the Cold North Wind

  • Michael James Watson

There is something in the air. Some worlds have clouds, just like those. Some have a heavy heat, as this one does. It seems as if it is always night, even under the brightest sun. It has a touch of static that arcs every few moments. There is a sense of old blood. There is a feel of old feuds. The entourage of the Arch mage moved along quickly, the wind propelling them, faster then those walking or riding that they passed. Coming out the hilly region of Varci, next to the Great lake of Ciambia. Members of the entourage said the great lake was the largest lake in the world, though there were bigger ones in the Stair Vales. Crossing the great fruitful plains of Orvania stretching as far as the eye could see in all directions. Wild grains inter-spaced with vast communal farms, tending cultivated grains. The farms steads were eager to serve the entourage, each trying to out -generous the last. Gardens rich with produce were the area of work for the children in these great hamlets in farm form. Along the way the Archmage Ninaaratres, whose sudden appearance shocked the natives, performed blessings, weddings, casting of the corn, and even a funeral. Her presence was always welcome, though the awe of the populace was often palpable. She had requested Realmer and Xorit attend her during these occasions but otherwise was quiet and aloof, secluded by her acolytes as they traveled. Crossing the plains a sense of the rise of the landscape told of a gentle rise in the landscape of the course of days. Eventually a row of rocks loomed ahead. As the land flattened out the wall of rocks was mighty, 100' feet at least, with a single passage.

  • Michael James Watson

The Archmage comes beside Realmer, having traveled and kept her distance till now to a large part. “The Rocks of the Orvania. The Clan of the Wild Grasses spent thousands of years clearing the rocky ground we just spent 7 days passing through and the land we will pass through for the next 7. Once it was an impassable rocky ground. But they plowed every inch of the land and removed all the rocks, bringing them to this high point of the long vast plain. Its been lived on in one or another for 15000 years. Tomorrow we will pass the Rocks and go down into the horse plains of the Wild Grass Clan. We will come to the city of Nia, where the Stair of the Orvania, ruled by the Horse Lord Trualta of the Wild Grasses, Master of the East Wind and Lord of the Air. He is a quiet man, but powerful. He may not be there or he may be upon the stair. He may know that I have trapped Hagalta, Master of the South Wind and Master of Stone, beyond the arch. He may not. We pay little attention to what occurs out-world. I recommend you answer him in as brief a fashion as possible should we engage him. Otherwise I intend to travel across the sea quickly. Once we reach the sea, out of the sight of land, my Wind will come to me. Then we can bypass this slow travel and take wing to Blomsia, and my stair. Once there I'll summon my sister and then we three will hold conference. Agreed?”

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer takes an immediate liking to this place; it reminds him of his years as a Vampyr, always in the dark of night or in dark places delving. He didn't mind the crackling in the air at all; he rather liked the feeling of power and ancientness that this place emanates. When he is required to attend Nina as she performs her 'godly duties' for her 'worshipers', he feels odd performing 'Cleric duties' at her side. When Nina draws close and speaks with Realmer, he listens intently and savors the history of this land. "Agreed. Brief and respectful."

  • Michael James Watson

As Realmer considers the "worshipers" and the "clerical" duties it occurs to him that they don't seem to revere her in the way one might revere a goddess or holy figure. They seem to treat her as a favorite great aunt. Like the beloved sister of all their grandfathers stretching back into the ages. Like Belgarath and Polgara, like Gandalf. And its noted that these people are not the people of her Stair or Wind. These are the people of the Horse lord and the Wild Grasses Clan. She lets a humble farmer with his large family and farm workers escort her to the seat of honor, the seat at the head of the table, with all honor, then at the last second she demures, sitting at the right hand chair and helping the humble farmer own to his regular seat. a gesture of respect that will be remembered on this farm as long as stories are told of the day the Arch Mage of the North Wind shared their table. Sometimes she even pours their mugs of beer as if she was one of the family. From farm to farm its often the same.

  • Michael James Watson

They do not speak ill of the Horse Lord Trualta, but they also do not speak glowingly about him. His herds and people pass by, take food and livestock, but never enough to starve the people. He is often available for those clerical duties and has a reputation for suddenly appearing if a farmstead has health issues with their livestock. He's stay for a month or so and afterwards the livestock lines will be healthier for many generations. He is also known to cause storms to not devastate farmed lands urging the storms out over the wild grain regions instead.

  • Michael James Watson

He does wield High and Low justice and while he allows his horseman some abuses he is harsh on raiders. And he is on good terms, so they say, with the Adask Master of the South Wind and Master of Stone, Hagalta.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

As Realmer sees more of how Ninaaratres, the Arch Mage of the North Wind, interacts with the people of the land and how they revere her, he feels less odd and less 'clerical' about his 'role' in those gatherings. With Nina's permission, he will help anyone that needs it, using his magic, potions or poultices as needed. Since arriving in this Shadow, Bob has been in the form of an Albino Raven, usually perched upon Realmer's left shoulder, if not flying overhead or nearby. Realmer listens carefully to the people's opinion on Trualta and is displeased to hear he allows his followers to abuse the people of the land, no matter how minor. And that he may be on good terms with Hagalta does not bother him much; 'on good terms' does not always mean 'thick as thieves'. He will reserve his judgment until after he has met and gotten to know Trualta, should that happen. Realmer converses with his team as well as Xorit and his team as time and circumstances allow. He will also converse with Nina when it seems she wants to.

  • Michael James Watson

A lot of the farms have minor issues they would never bring to Nina that they will for you; small livestock issues. Tesa seems to be quiet during the traveling, out of her city element. Carston seems more comfortable. He often visits the blacksmiths and seems to know that trade. He and Gangdis seem to always fond what ever weapons re around and enjoy sharpening them and repairing them in ways even the blacksmiths are impressed by. Gangdis, as an Elite, of course learned Metalworking at nasty Place and used it for centuries in the military.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer helps with the livestock and other issues as best he can. He is not an animal husband, but he does know his natural ways of healing and his potions and poultices are quite efficacious if he does say so himself. He is pleased that Gangdis and Carston are pitching in where they can and understands Tesa's 'out of element' quietness. Realmer will also entertain any children that approach him with some Cantrips and minor illusions... nothing scary, something fun to make them laugh.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

He will use his Magics to repair, rebuild or strengthen structures, to rid homes or farmland of pests (insect, mammal, avian or reptile), he will dig wells or clear land... all with the aid of Magic, High or Low order as the job requires.

  • Michael James Watson

Crossing the rock wall the land slopes down toward a distant sea. A Dark blue water. The wild grasses are vast but on either side of the rock wall are farms that almost make villages. But the thing that is most shocking is the Stair of Orvania, near the sea. Its a massive structure, thin, of stone and vines, stretching up into the sky several miles. Its wide. As you approach you note the stairs have balconies of different styles. Every 30 or 40 feet from the top to the bottom. As you look it over Nina comes up beside you. “The Stair of Orvania. 1500 Walkways into shadows. Each a vast and different land. Peoples, technologies, magics, all different. Color Magic. Ice magic. Odd foods. Odd peoples.. Different time ratios. The Wild grass clan has been exploring them for thousands of years. They have war forces in them. The Odaraxta have one Stair larger then it. Their war forces are great. Emilie has two such towers. I have three. There are a few others. There are some small stairs and a lot of tiny ones. When the wars start its hard to stop them. Once Hagalta enters the land again, he will almost certainly raise the red banner. Once he does, you'll have to find a way into the Stair of Henexiumia. Satura will almost certainly be there.”

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer stares in amazement at the sheer size of the Stair of Orvania. He is even more amazed/impressed by the fact that there are Shadow Paths leading to and away from it. Knowing there are many Stairs, great and small, throughout this Shadow, all with Shadow Paths leading to a multitude of Shadows is quite intriguing to Realmer. He nods his head in interest as Nina speaks. "As I have experienced myself, wars can take on a life of their own and drag on for many years or even decades longer than anyone expected or wanted. And I am sure you are correct about Hagalta, he is quite hot-headed and seems to have a real grudge against me... especially since I 'openly defied him' by sitting in Xorit's Clan Box in support of Trixta during the final battle drill. I am surprised he showed restraint in the use of Farslayer against me... but perhaps he fears the Amberite Blood Curse and thought better of it." Realmer goes quiet for a moment then asks, "Where is the Stair of Henexiumia? Why do you think she is being held there? And where within would you guess Satura to be held?"

  • Michael James Watson

"Its been ages since i was in the Hexex Stair. It has certainly changed. It is far to the west. on the last land of the West Wind. The Odaraxta lands are not as peaceful as the Wild Grass or my own lands. They are often the brunt of the Odaraxta passions and battle lust. As for why I know she is there.. his first wife, Uxtrasa, and his son and daughter, Xorax, and Drixtra are there. Knowing Uxtrasa, I'm sure she keeps Satura on a short leash. Probably an actually leash and a ball gag if i know here. She is a cruel woman even among the Odaraxta. That Xorit i fighting the Reunion is going to add bile to the war. Once we are under the north wind we will need to make plans. "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Agreed; we must make plans. We will need much information" he looks to Gangdis and the rest of his team, "Knowledge is Power and we will need as much of both as possible to accomplish this endeavor. May our travels to the Land of the North Wind be swift and uninterrupted."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer tries not to think on the images that came into his head when Nina described Uxtrasa and her cruelty towards his mother.

  • Michael James Watson

Traveling down to the Stair it dominates the sky more every mile. As her entourage approaches the city surrounding the base a force of horse exit the it. A thousand horse spread across the path and ride at a leisurely speed but seem to traveling using the Wind to move them as Nina has been.

  • Michael James Watson

At their head is a fine horseman, well dressed and armed


  • Michael James Watson

Nina nods, "Trualta. The Master of the East Wind and Lord of the Air. "


  • Michael James Watson

Nina strides out from the group, remaining mounted. She turns, motioning for Realmer to follow her. Riding out a hundred yards from the small group. The other force stop a mile off and Trualta and a pair of horseman ride out

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer follows, Bob as an Albino Raven on his left shoulder.

  • Michael James Watson

He raises a hand, "Hail and fair winds. Mistress of the North Wind. Welcome to the land of my Stair. Does thou come to take my land and people from me?"

  • Michael James Watson

Nina laughs, "Well, do your people tire of the grasslands and wish to seek the cold north."

  • Michael James Watson

Trualta ""Well, then that's it. I'll retire to the Green Fey. Make sure t water the horses."

  • Michael James Watson

Looking to Realmer-"I would have assumed i would have heard if you had born fruit. Yet you have a kin beside you. "

  • Michael James Watson

Nina-"Its complicated. Do you wish to speak about it here or someplace more comfortable?"

  • Michael James Watson

Trualta-"You know the way. " He turns to his men and speaks briefly to them. They ride off and the force rides west. Trualta turns rides a few steps and fades away.

  • Michael James Watson

Nina-"I shall leave it to you to explain your heritage. Call me a cousin if you wish. However, my relation to Amber is of little importance. Few have come from Amber in the ages of men. Nor is my marriage a topic of public knowledge. "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"I will take your advice and keep it brief and I will not lie" he replies. "But I feel a bit uncomfortable mentioning my mother's name."

  • Michael James Watson

Nina-"that is understandable. Though he might know of her. And since this war is mostly about her he will know eventually.".

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"I will not offer up the information, but will answer honestly if asked" he says with a sigh.

  • Michael James Watson

Riding into the city her presence is a shock. Shop keepers, good wives, everyone stands aside and watches her go by. They don't applaud just watch her go by. There is a a sense of them not wanting to insult their lord by speaking to her. Nina travels quietly. Turning down a small ally she dismounts and enters a small door. She waves for you to wait. Moments later she emerges. Getting on her horse she continues. In time the group enters a massive plaza at the base of the stair. There is considerable up and down traffic and a large body of mounted guards.

  • Michael James Watson

Riding up the senior guard comes out bows deeply. “Mistress of the North, the Stair Lord awaits in the Tower of the Wind” Nina nods, “I was told.” Guard-”The first Path is our stables. Shall we tend your horses while you are within? Nina nods.. “Yes. Sir Carston, will you attend the Horses and our gear while the Horsemen tend our weary beasts? Lady Tesa, why don't you stroll around and see about the town a bit.” Walking up the stairs, with Realmer and Gangdis, and Xorit to the third path.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer nods to Carston and Tesa then proceeds up the stair with Nina, Gangdis and Xorit, remaining silent the entire time.

  • Michael James Watson

The path opens to a warm brightly lit land. A massive castle on the left has guards that escort the group to a balcony the size of a football field, covered with light clothes. By the edge is a series of tables well furnished with food and drinks,. Food of a fish style and drinks of light wines. Trualta sits, smoking a long pipe. He rises and shakes hands with Nina and motions to the tables. The breeze off the harbor is warm and salty.

  • Michael James Watson

Trualta -"Some mysteries are too good to wait for. I consulted my auguries"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Once Nina has sampled the food and drink, Realmer will partake of the food, but will only drink water, as he does not like wine. If Nina does not eat then Realmer will not either.

  • Michael James Watson

She does and partakes of the wine, "So what did the Auguries tell you?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

If there is nothing else to drink upon the tables, Realmer will drink the wine, but very sparingly.

  • Michael James Watson

Trualta-"That Hagalta is having family issues. And that he has taken his forces trapped outside the Arch onto the jeweled Road to Amber"

  • Michael James Watson

Nina chuckles.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer does his best to remain calm and look calm... he know Random will want to know this information immediately... but circumstances prevent, for now.

  • Michael James Watson

Trualta-"So, young Lord, you are somehow related to Hagalta and Nina both? That is quite a surprise. Hagalta never mentioned Amber but it makes sense. You are Adask, clearly, is he your father?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Again, Realmer keeps his expression and demeanor calm and respectful. He bows his head politely to Trualta and says, "No, not to both, Lord Trualta. My name is Relmopator and I am son of Satura, but not Hagalta to the best of my knowledge. And I am grandson to Dworkin of Amber, so cousin to Nina. And yes, I am Adask, but to be honest it is recent news to me and that is why I have come to Adagalasck."

  • Michael James Watson

Trualta-"I see. Well Satura is certainly Adask, though of the pale variety.. As is her daughter by Hagalta., Dwynwen. Uxtrasa. and her children, Xorax, and Drixtra are of the gray race of the Adask, while Ninaaratres here is of the blue variety. Have you come to support the reunion or the severance?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"My reasons for being here did not involve either, Lord, as I was unaware of the situation until shortly after I arrived. I came to visit family I recently heard resided here, investigate my heritage and hopefully bring my mother back to Amber with me when I leave."

  • Michael James Watson

Xorit has said nothing and is sort of the elephant in the room.

  • Michael James Watson

Trualta-"So you did not bring War Chief of the Trixta to convince me to support the Severance? He knows he is not allowed to ask me for such a think. Nor technically should he ask Ninaaratres. Have you done so, Trixta?"

  • Michael James Watson

Trixta, "No, my fight is my own. Hagalta's fight is his own."

  • Michael James Watson

Ninaaratres-"Neither has asked me to support their side. I have not announced yet that i intend to support the Severance and my armies shall speak that to the War Chief of Clan Kalota on the field of battle. I no longer feel he should hold his clan, and he should not hold stair or Wind. I do not ask for your support at this time. I support the Severance, and once it is proven, i will support the Reunion of the Odaraxta under Xorit."

  • Michael James Watson

Xorit pales noticeably in surprise.

  • Michael James Watson

Trualta laughs.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"And my being here now is truly an odd timing of circumstances. Upon learning some of the Reunion and Severance I have decided I do not support the Reunion, but I cannot claim I support the Severance either, except by not supporting the Reunion."

  • Michael James Watson

Trualta "I see. Well. I have long supported Hagalta in his clan, Stair and Wind. It has long been the policy of the Wild Grasses Clan to support the Odaraxta clan in their rights."

  • Michael James Watson

Trualta-"However, i will not drink, share bread, or trade salt with the man"

  • Michael James Watson

Xorit inhales. Wanting to speak but not daring to speak.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"I see. Please forgive my ignorance of Adask culture, but does that include the right to hold someone against their will? And use them as leverage against others?"

  • Michael James Watson

Trualta-"Satura? I think you will find that she is not an unwilling participant in her marriage. Though how he acquired her affection i do not know. I do know his other wife is not pleased about it but she has already behaved improperly in my presence. I would aide you, short of war. is there something you would have of me?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer is shocked silent for a moment but recovers quickly. "Lord Trualta, your offer of aide is gracious and I am honored, but I would not know what to ask for nor what might cause war with Hagalta. But my goal is to at least visit with my mother and find out if she wishes to leave or why she wants to remain. And should she wish to leave, help her to do so."

  • Michael James Watson

he nods.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer takes a sip of wine forgetting what it is and tries not to visibly choke it down. He covers by saying, "I would also like to visit with my other cousin, Emilie, if possible and learn more about my Adask heritage while I am here, if time and circumstances permit."

  • Michael James Watson

Trualta-"Yes.... Emile, her Amber name...So you will be traveling far on your quests?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"So it would seem, Lord Trualta. I am unfamiliar with the geography of these lands but since each Stair Lord is named after one of the Winds, I should guess each resides at the far points of the map. Plus it will give me more time to learn more about Adagalasck and the Adask people."

  • Michael James Watson

"Lord Realmer, Lord Xorit, I can not declare my clan against Hagalta at this time, nor will I side in the Reunion of the Severance. But I can give you both a sign that will give them pause as they see it. A symbol of my personal regard but not the regard of my clan, stair or Wind.” Speaking to a attendant, who nods, and runs off. Trualta waits away from the tables for a few moments. The attendant and a soldier come leading two fine horses. One a black one, one a gray one with a multicolored main and tail. “These companions are of the wild grasslands. Call them in your need and they shall come to bear you. They are warriors of their own might, and runners of the long trail. The black one is Dact and will bear Lord Xorit. Graso is the gray that shall bear you, Lord Realmer. They are sturdy, and of the stable of my own companions. When you reach land beyond the sea, call them, and they will come.”

  • Michael James Watson

Xorit stands, and upon getting a nod from tau walks to grip the muzzle of the black making friends.

  • Michael James Watson

Xorit"You honor me, Lord, and I shall never forget it. My gratitude is yours"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer stands as well and follows Xorit's lead and introduces himself to Graso. "My great thanks Lord Trualta, I am honored to have such a gift and a symbol of your regard. Is there anything that I might be able to do for you, Lord?"

  • Michael James Watson

"My clan, Stair and Wind? No there isn't. For me personally...Do not drink, share bread, or trade salt with the man. Lady, will you walk with me for a bit while your companions seek the land below?" Nina rises and nods, and the two stroll off together.

Tesa Resa

  • Michael James Watson

Sitting on the top of a smooth sided tower, leaning over the curtain wall out to the sea, not for the first time, Tesa wonders at the way the universe works. A mere thirteen years before she had been a gutter rat starving in the Maze of the city of Sanctuary. Starving for a living, fighting for coin, climbing, burglarizing hovels for coppers, townhouses for silver. Occasionally digging in dumpsters for scrapes of food the rich tossed out. And too often, trading herself for survival. Now she stood on a tower overlooking a rich city. In the company of royalty, and for all practical purposes, gods. A pocket full of gems that would have bought her a townhouse among the wealthy back in her homeland. And in Amber, a small room in the region of Thin Whip's sway with a fortune in gold enough to buy her an estate in the Rankan Empire. If she played her cards right the company she was keeping might make her rich enough to buy a title. Heck, she might even earn a title. Stranger things have happened, just usually not to her. All because a voice from the shadow of a scaffold said he had uses for her. There had been hard times. There were the lessons in the knife. Snikura Assassins. Lessons in how to move in the seen unseen. To find shade in the bright sun. To hide tools in plain sight. The short con and the long con. Slight of hand and slight of sight. Theater. Then the voice said he would need her someday but till then her life was her own and he left her on the Jeweled road walking toward Amber. “All Roads Lead to Amber” the voice in the shade of the hangman's scaffold had said. He was certainly right.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

As Realmer looks out to sea watching Nina's ship being brought in from the outer waters, he contemplates all that has occurred since he left Amber... mostly what has transpired since arriving at the Arch and then coming to Adagalasck. Even before leaving Amber, Realmer knew that matters between he and Hagalta would not turn out well, but he had not expected that it would lead to a potential war with Amber, let alone so quickly... but Hagalta was a hot-head, and Realmer knew this. As Realmer is reaching inside his Robe for his Trump Deck, so he can contact King Random and inform him of the activities of the Adask and his sister, he notices that Tesa has quietly slipped out of the stonework, as it were... Realmer wonders how long she has been standing there quietly, just barely with the corner of his vision... he wonders how Bob didn't notice her either. He smiles.

  • Michael James Watson

“Quite a city. Never seen one quite like it. Merchants with no locks on the door. Open air booths left untended. I went by a fish booth. Fried fish, Fried potatoes. Fried apples. No one there. The cook was manning a collection of fry pots a stone throw in the back. Big bowl of gems on the counter. I yelled to the guy I wanted to by some fish and he said , "Ok with me". Ok with me? He didn't even look. A woman came up, yelled a a greeting to the guy, poured a bunch of each in a basket, tossed in a couple gems, and went on her way... I asked her what he charged for the basketfull she took and she said, “What I could afford for fish today” What the hell?” She pulls out a thin hooked knife the size of her palm. “This is fine work. Nice fishhooking knife. Id pay two gold wings at least for its like. Maybe three. I asked the smith how much for 4 of them and he said, “You'll pay me fair.” Then the bastard walked away leaving a frigging fortune in gems on his counter. I took a dozen and said, “How does a red gem sound?” The guy said, 'Sound like ill visit the barber on the way home, my little parrot top lovely. Maybe ill get some colors put in my beard. Wife will love it. “ Then back to his fire.. You can't steal from these people..” She shakes her head and withdraws a flask to sip. Leaving you to your business.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer begins smiling the moment she begins describing the trusting manner of the citizens of the city; he understands her shock at such a things considering where he came from himself. He chuckles and says "I hope you paid him fair."

The Sea and Reunited Lovers

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer then draws forth Random's card and focuses upon it, concentrating. Due to the sensitive nature of his information, Realmer will converse mentally through the Psychic Contact the Trump provides, that way to prevent any eavesdropping.

  • Michael James Watson

reaching Carly she puts you through to Random.

  • Michael James Watson

Random-"OK.... Why do i think you have bad news? "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

'Because I do, Majesty' he replies mentally. 'It would seem that Hagalta, Master of the South Winds and Lord of Stone is on the Jeweled Road headed to Amber, with a large contingent of his men and those loyal to him. I just found out a very short time ago and I thought I should bring it to your attention as soon as my circumstances permitted.'

  • Michael James Watson

"Well...Where are you? "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

'Currently in Adagalasck at the Stair of Lord Trualta, Master of the East Winds and Lord of Air.' Realmer gives Random the run down from the time his group arrived at the Arch to present.... he does leave out the part where Gangdis cracked Shaxta's Battle Sign and the part about Realmer intending to give it to Xorit.

  • Michael James Watson

"You've met Nina then. And Emilie? Shier cards are cold now.."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

'I have not met her, yet. It sounds like Nina intends for us to meet with her so that we may all discuss family matters. And I did mention Farslayer, didn't I?' Realmer knows he did, but feels he must mention it again.

  • Michael James Watson

"Yes, another sugar in my coffee. So I've a Adask war chief leading his clan down the Jeweled road with Farslayer on his back. OK, that's a big problem but hardly earth shaking in comparison to the mess I've got going on. . I have a brother who seems to have disappeared and is refusing trump contact and took a big chunk of Amber's defenses with him without so much as a Mother May I. I had to get Benedict to bring one of his pet warbands in to cover the hole. Luckily chaos isn't attacking. Ill contact Lop and get a CHAD force going down the road. Any idea how many troops this Adask has?

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer recounts the numbers of men he saw on Shaxta's side on the battle field during the battle drill, then estimates maybe half of the 'spectators' might be supporters. He glances around to see if Gangdis is in sight, if so he will ask him, Realmer is pretty sure Gan would have an exact count.

  • Michael James Watson

Would Gang have been sent elsewhere? otherwise he would be with you now. If so he gives a quick rundown on numbers and forces he saw beyond the arch

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Gan would not have been needed elsewhere, Carston is taking care of the horses and Nina is speaking with Trualta in private; Gan would have been with Realmer most likely. Realmer relays the numbers and details as Gan relays them to him.

  • Michael James Watson

"OK, so not exactly a major war but a certain annoyance. Ill see about getting someone out to Diega Raks to greet them. Can't have them wandering into Arden right now with Julian apparently taking the rangers on a training mission somewhere. OK, keep in touch"

  • Michael James Watson

he breaks contact

  • Michael James Watson

Carston arrives and tells you the ship is ready. Xorit and his forces are on the ship already a is the Arch Mage.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Are our horses and gear aboard?" he asks Carston. If so, he will have Bob Trump-port all of them to the deck of the ship, which Bob can easily see from this vantage.

  • Michael James Watson

Arriving on the ship Nina is waiting.. "We take to the sea. In short order ill summon the wind and our path will be quicker."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Forgive my tardiness, I had not realized your ship had already docked and that you were waiting on me." Realmer bows politely and apologetically.

  • Michael James Watson

she laughs lightly, "i wait on many things." She goes the the bow and waits as the crew take it to the sea

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer moves up beside her but does not get too close. He looks out over the sea and quietly takes it in for a few moments, deciding what to say. "There is much about Adagalasck and the Adask people and culture I still have yet to learn, and much about myself it would seem as well. I was raised in a Shadow called Montagar; I knew my grandmother as Verna and my father as Sir Kandith, I did not know the word 'Adask' nor of this Shadow... but I have heard rumors that Hagalta may be my father and that Vox may be my grandmother. I know not which is true, as I know memory and magic go hand in hand and that what I recall may not be factual." He pauses to take a deep breath of sea air and says, "I'm not sure why I feel comfortable sharing these things with you, but I do and I feel I should."

  • Michael James Watson

Nina nods, "Many things are unknown. Many secrets best spoken of. You see me wandering the world, riding on horseback, in the wind, but Its been years since i left my Stair. We do love our secrets.. you seem to have been raised deep in the secrets of others. if it is of interest, I do not believe Hagalta is your blood father. I sense too much human in you. But you are certainly Adask. There is a tinge of something else. It could be easily identified as Dragonkin. but...."

  • Michael James Watson

"But... I think its the breath of Chaos. Dworkin, few of us knew him, really. We thought him a wizard friend of Oberon. But a few of us, strong in the craft, knew better. Emilie and I spoke to him often and he denied his blood. But he taught us sorcery as well. Dworkin and Oberon spent considerable time here. Oberon was lusty and his time with my mother was brief. But in my sister and I came her heritage of Adask and Fey, and Oberon's Heritage of Chaos and a Primal Beast. Remember, no matter who they serve, even the Serpent of Chaos, are in themselves manifestations of supreme Order. Dworkin is of the Royal House of Chaos. That is the line of Shapechangers.. "

  • Michael James Watson
  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer nods his head and contemplates what Nina has said.

  • Michael James Watson

"Adagalasck is ancient. It has lost many of its children from time to time and I think who you knew as Verna may well have been one of those lost children. it would explain why Dworkin found her. But i am afraid of something that I suspect. I believe Adagalasck may have existed before Amber. That it was a failed attempt to create what Dworkin finally succeeded in creating. The Adask are not natives here. They came here in a time so long ago that few remember that time. They were led here by two, a brother and sister, and their patron beast the Phoenix. Less then a dozen in this realm know of this possibility. I suspect the one you knew as Verna was one of those two. And either she or her brother created this realm to defend themselves from the attacks of Chaos"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"I thank you for your candor on my parentage; it helps alleviate some of my concerns. I was raised by Dworkin and Verna, Satura and Sir Kandith in my earliest years... I will always remember Dworkin as a man of great magics and great powers. A bit later in my adult years he came back into my life and taught me about Amber and Chaos, the Pattern, all forms of High Order Magic, and the basics of Trump. He also taught me how to use my natural abilities and talents. It wasn't until I walked the Actual Pattern in Amber that I realized I was different from the rest of the family and why he had taught me about Chaos and Shape Shifting away from Amber." He is silent for a moment then continues. "I had read and heard that there were/are Shadows that pre-date Amber, but I had never heard that any were failed attempts to create 'Amber' or something like it. That my grandmother may be someone greater that what I recall seems certain, now that I think on it... and knowing what I do of Dworkin." He takes a deep breath and lets it out as a sigh, "Still so much to learn."

  • Michael James Watson

"Shadows are the functions of great Inscriptions. Two great realms existed before Amber. But there were small places of stability in the possession of Chaos lords in the vast ancient time. Calmir and Paragon, though those names are just words our understanding can embrace. My life is long but even I am but a babe in the length of time involved. Calmir and Paragon were great creations that threatened the flow of unchecked Chaos. They were thrown down. I suspect that this realm was created when the last two of the Royal Family of Calmir, who had hid in Paragon for eons till it was destroyed as well. Now, to my understanding there remain large parts of the lands of those realms. Even parts of the inscriptions. I know a part of the inscription of Calmir is in our realm. My magics tell me so. In my hall, the shadow of the Inscription of Primal Ad......k that may be assayed tells me that the Primal inscription i beside a part of Calmir.. But even I have never seen the Primal Inscription... Do you wonder why I tell you all of this after such a short acquaintance? "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"I could conjecture a few theories, but I am sure none would be entirely accurate and I would surely waste your time. And I am sure you are willing to tell me why because I surely do wonder."

  • Michael James Watson

"I intend to aide you in any way i can. But in return, i ask that you break a prime law and decree of Oberon that has caused my sister and I great pain. One that has forced shame on Shadow and anger and bloodshed on Amber. Summon Julian here. Bring him into the realm that Oberon made my prison. Oberon decreed that i would never be reunited with my Husband. Do this, and my heart will be grateful beyond words, but not beyond my power to reward."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer says, "I shall gladly summon him but I will not force him to come should he not wish it." If Nina is watching closely, she will note that Julian's Trump is was up one of Realmer's sleeves, not in his Deck. Realmer looks to Gangdis briefly, then back to Nina before focusing his attention on the image of Julian then concentrating.......

  • Michael James Watson

the trump connects immediately. "Bide" The contact holds. Julian is clearly in a Hellride.. A few minutes he stabilizes the realm to a solid place.. "Realmer? I've set my attention to ignore all Trumps save yours.. What news have you? I'm afraid i may be in a bit of trouble myself and can not tarry long."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"A wife wishes to be reunited with her husband, but this breaks the decree of a now-deceased king of Amber. What do you think of this, cousin? Will you come across to me?" Realmer turns so Nina is clearly in the background.

  • Michael James Watson

"PULL ME THROUGH NOW!!!"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer pulls Julian through with as much strength as he can muster and then uses the speed and Flight of the robe to get out of the way and sort of fling Julian towards Nina.

  • Michael James Watson

The grasp each other tightly. Ignoring all else.. Julian's armor shifts to bracer form leaving him in a light green well worn arming coat.

  • Michael James Watson

After a time certain ships officers have come up, ships business, and stand in shock..

  • Michael James Watson

In each others arms, they turn to you. Nina says "Well, Captain, I see we are almost far enough out.. Lets get another , oh, ten hours toward the North. That should be .... enough... ah distance... " They turn and she leads him toward the stairs below. Julian, turns, "Realmer... Contact Duncan.. I left him abruptly. This ship is massive, it should be big enough..." They disappear below decks,

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer does not bother to reply to Julian as they disappear. He nods to the Captain and heads to the cargo hold and finds a large open area then pulls Duncan's card from the deck and concentrates on the image.

  • Michael James Watson

The contact is not immediate but comes, "Who?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Lord Relmopator, friend and cousin to Julian. He bade me contact you immediately. I have a feeling you and many others need to be brought to safety, is this true?"

  • Michael James Watson

"Yes, we have met a few times at Dinner but neither of us is a common sight are we? . Julian said he was waiting for your call. I'll start things at my end. We are at a bit of a lather. Are you ready at your end?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"As ready as I can be. In the hold of a massive ship with a large open area. I can enhance the Trump Contact with Magic to strengthen the contact and enlarge the opening, but we will both need to remain on our respective sides until it is done. Send them through quickly but orderly."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer looks to see if Gangdis is nearby, if so he will ask him to organize the incoming troops. If not, he will call out to him to bring him down to the hold.

  • Michael James Watson

he starts moving men and horse through. Clearly the Arden Rangers. Gangdis steps up and starts telling them where to go. Soon Carston arrives to help as well. The ship crew is shocked to suddenly have a cohort of Men and horse on the ship and in time It starts getting very crowded

  • Michael James Watson

While they see you holding the Trump open they respond instantly to Gangdis's Voice of Command. Many of them recognize him and while surprised know that a Royal and an Elite issuing orders are orders to be obeys, especially since Duncan, the Ranger # 2 is sending them through"

  • Michael James Watson

Soon the Dogs start coming through.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer smiles a wide grin at the site of Julian's Hounds of Arden... he remembered.

  • Michael James Watson

among the Men and Horse comes a very large burly looking man, with massive shoulders. Dark brown Hair, to his waist. Naked and unarmed. He looks like a body builder with a 12 pack chest. he comes to regard you.

  • Michael James Watson

"You are Relmopator? Yes?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer looks him over and is reminded of many a Barbarian he encountered in his Adventuring days... only much less clothing. "Yes, I am he. And you are?"

  • Michael James Watson

"Where is Julian? Is he with his mare finally? Yes?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Yes, Julian is with his wife and should not be disturbed for any reason."

  • Michael James Watson

"I don't suppose you could find me some large pants.. or oh! Sail cloth.. a toga will do, yes?"

  • Michael James Watson

"And I wouldn't think of disturbing Julian now... Not for a few hours anyway.. Oh.. is there a large amount of beer aboard?"

  • Michael James Watson

Finally Duncan steps through, ending the trump contact

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer breaks the contact and puts the Trump away. Then he Conjures up a set of simple set of durable clothing; pants, tunic, boots, underclothes. All in light browns.

  • Michael James Watson

The man looks at them.. "Oh Excellent.. Ah... Duncan... can you remind me how to do this.. The last time was so embarrassing..."

  • Michael James Watson

Duncan nods, pats you on the shoulder, "Thanks, ill help him... Come sit over on these bales Morganstern. We'll get you dressed in no time. "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer raises an eyebrow, but does not say a word. With a few waves of his hands and a few simple Cantrips, the clothing helps Morganstern dress himself. He nods his head to the two. "Welcome aboard."

  • Michael James Watson

he takes a shirt and lays it over his chest, "Well, Realmer! Does this color fit me?"

  • Michael James Watson

"Neigh!!! Neigh!!!" He laughs uproariously and puts the shirt on.

  • Michael James Watson

Duncan leans in to you. "Morgan has a terrible sense of humor."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer chuckles and says to Morganstern, "No, it doesn't." He waves his hand, a Cantrips later the color matches the gray of his normal horse coat and the boots shine like steel.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"There. That's better" he says after giving him an appraising look. He then winks to Duncan and pulls out a bottle of homemade ale and give it to Duncan and then another and hands it to Morganstern.

  • Michael James Watson

Morgan nods, drinking the bottle with excitement. "Ah, bottles.. So much cleaner then sticking ones face in a barrel... Eh Duncan! Hey! Were are on the ocean!! " He runs over to look over the rail.

  • Michael James Watson

dun-"He isn't in human form often.. I swear he is smarter then he seems.. He got drunk with Droppa once and now he knows thousands of really dumb jokes.. We should move along. I bet its a mess down there. Hey! Gangdis! Well met, Sir!"

  • Michael James Watson

Gangdis comes up and shakes hands with Duncan, "And well met lad.. Realmer, i think the ships crew is about to lose its mind. Tesa is playing door guard down there but the captain is beside himself. This ship is held together by magic and nails and the nails are stretched tight. There is hardly a square foot below that isn't man, horse or dog. The decks don't look more roomy either.. The ship is slogging to a stop and the Captain can't get the thing to catch the wind. poor seamanship really.. "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer smiles and casts a simple Enlarge spell upon the sails and mast to help with the wind and the weight until he can get below decks. Then he goes below decks and casts a few Magnificent Mansion Spells, an extra-dimensional space that creates a door on one side but the interior of a mansion on the inside. He will put Julian's rangers in them.

  • Michael James Watson

Duncan-"Well i can sort out the men and horse.. I imagine they are dropping tack and grooming now.. We had a hard ride getting... well... away from Amber.. "

  • Michael James Watson

those are in your spell lists?

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Oops. Just checked... The Magnificent Mansion is called Secure Shelter and I forgot to add Enlarge. So scratch that part. Sorry.

  • Michael James Watson

Her ship is extraordinarily magic already.. trying to manipulate her magic could be dicey but you can try...

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

He will cast the Secure Shelter spells on some empty crates so it does not interact with the ship itself.

  • Michael James Watson

A good strong wind might be as helpful as anything

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Well, he does not have any weather control spells... but he does still possess the Ambir JoJ which can control weather in some places... he pulls it from his Robe and concentrates on intensifying the wind blowing to the north.

  • Michael James Watson

and before you mention it, Mold Shadow won't work here since this is the prime realm but might work on the shadows on the stair

  • Michael James Watson

The jewel warms to the touch and winds swirl suddenly hard against the sails as you direct them.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.
  • Score!!*
  • Michael James Watson

In a few moments the Captain comes up beside you.. "Excellent.. We need a strong wind in these sails here to get the tiller working. " He speaks about the wind as if he is used to speaking to one able to control the winds, as he does with Nina"

  • Michael James Watson

In time they get things squared away. Its tight, but there are over 300 horse with men and dogs. They have their own food and they start wandering about

  • Michael James Watson

Duncan comes up to the bow of the ship. Nods to you and sits on the edge of the ship. "Well, sir, we're outlaws now i guess"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Maybe not as much as you think, Duncan. Hagalta, my adversary, marches towards Amber on the Jeweled Road as we speak. Perhaps the outcome will outweigh the actions when all is said and done."

  • Michael James Watson

"I wouldn't know. Dawn this morning Dad came up, called for his 300 best, and set out on the Hellride We've been riding hard for three days. He said he only knew one way to get to Ad......k and it was cross country.. We've hardly eaten.. certainly not slept."

  • Michael James Watson

"Is there something... electric.. in the air?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Eat and sleep and rest well; you have arrived in Adagalasck, nephew. There will be time for stories and information later, when all are rested and sated. And yes, it's just this place; it... crackles."

  • Michael James Watson

"I thought as much. I got a degree in mechanical engineering in shadow and this had the feel of something electric in the atmosphere... Hmm Does the Pattern imprint seem somehow.... distant?

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Yes, probably due to the Squiggle here... its power can be easily felt. The crackle in the air may or may not be related. But I must say I am fascinated by the midday darkness of this place... rather comforting."

  • Michael James Watson

"Well, the sun is bright enough but it does seem somehow like night time.. strange. Well, if you don't mind. I'm jut going to slump down here and sleep. "

  • Michael James Watson

Time passes...

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer rests, eats, re-hangs spells, as time allows.

  • Michael James Watson

In time one of the sailor tells you that the Lady is on deck if you can attend her

  • Michael James Watson

The ship feels like the winds you set have been replaced by a more practiced wind and the ship is moving along at a good clip.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer thanks the sailor and heads for the main deck in search of Ninaaratres, Arch Mage of the North Wind. Bob accompanies him in his Miniature Beholder form; easier for navigating the below decks sections of the ship. When he finds her he will approach and wait for her to notice him then he bows and says, "You called for me?" Bob will be floating a respectful distance away from Realmer but over the heads of any on deck.

  • Michael James Watson

She turns and nods. Turning back directing the wind she motion a hand up to the bow beside her.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer approaches and takes the indicated place at her side.

  • Michael James Watson

Nina-"Its a strange day for me. very strange.. Like being young again. Julian is below sorting out his rangers. He is.. going to be embarrassing for a few days,, I imagine i will as well. We spoke at length.. We, the 5 of us including Duncan, have a serious problem. Several really. Julian claims he felt the Arch broken. I believe that's when you entered. Other Amberites have tried and failed. But you are Adask and of this realm even if you never came here. I am certain some version of my suspicions are some part true. Julian says my Trump, Emilie's and Adagalasck are all cold to the touch in the deck, but they don't make contact. No one could trump in or contact those inside. But now they can reach out. Maybe they always could. I never had a deck. So one way or another our isolation is at an end. Ancient enemies will come. "

  • Michael James Watson

"We have a war perhaps coming. and below that the question of Reunion and Severance which in the light of things seems a small matter. Several thousand Odaraxta are heading toward Amber though i can't imagine that's much of a threat. And of course their are your family issues with Hagalta himself.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Perhaps it was all going to happen sooner or later anyway, but I feel me arriving at the time that I did was fortuitous; I believe the matter of the Reunion and the Severance are of great significance to me and the Adask people and Amber as well. If Hagalta is challenged on all fronts and the Reunion of Shaxta is opposed by all, then his claim to power and title all fall away and all that is left is an angry Adask with Family Issues and Vengeance on his mind." He ponders a moment then continues. "The matter of the Arch and the Trumps may be related, but how I am related to the Arch being broken I am still unsure... unless your Stone had something to do with it." He pulls it out and studies it casually but continues speaking. "Perhaps I should make my own Trump Decks..." he muses, "I could give you a deck or two." He snaps himself out of thought and says, "Whatever the consequences now, my intentions were not to start a war. But I will learn what I can and at least visit my mother before I pay the fiddler for my tune."

  • Michael James Watson

She extends a hand to the stone and it flips to her hand.

  • Michael James Watson

"So long ago.. This was probably the key. Bringing it into the realm.. Oberon sealed it. Maybe only his stone could open it"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"And somehow I believe Arloxedra would have learned this through his research, hence his reason for giving it to me."

  • Michael James Watson

"Mayhap. I know little of Amber. I was not there long. Bleys was a child, Fiona a babe. Julian, Caine, Emilie and I spent a great deal of time....alone.. I was never comfortable there .. My realm sat out Patternfall unaffected. The forces of Chaos could not enter. But we felt Oberon's fall. Emilie and I watched his funeral procession. I've never met Random. Im considering throwing myself on his mercy, if only to save Julian's standing. What say you?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"I don't believe you will need to 'throw yourself on his mercy', but I am sure some open dialog would get matters going in the right direction. Though I would also advise that we consult with your sister, Emilie before making any dialogs with King Random." He takes a breath, "And I am sure Julian will land on his feet once the dust settles; but he made his choices as I made mine. I will take what ever blame I can shoulder because I am happy to see you two reunited. And because both of you showed me kindness and treated me with respect when others in the family showed a mild version of revulsion or fear... so I owe the both of you for that alone. Random is a decent man, just talk to him and listen to what he has to say."

  • Michael James Watson

"I'm not sure I have the Energy to deal with Emilie today. I had hoped to have time on my stair before seeking her out"

  • Michael James Watson

A Trump contact touches

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Then let us take the needed time; I would love to visit your Stair before meeting more family...." he holds up his hand giving her the wait a minute gesture... his eyes glass over slightly... he braces for assault, forced or subtle.... then, "Who calls?"

  • Michael James Watson

"A king with a real headache that no amount of rum is going to fix"

  • Michael James Watson

"But i am really tempted to drag a dozen barrels into the dungeon and give it a try. Sometimes i miss my old cell"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"I am sorry to hear that, Majesty" Realmer says aloud though in a low conversational tone. "What I can I do for you?" He glances to Nina then back to Random through the Contact

  • Michael James Watson

"Well i have an Adask and 3000 of his retainers that Flora is trying to find lodgings for. Your Hagalta certainly came to Amber. Walked right into court, declared that he was the High King of Adagalasck, Master of the Four winds, and he appealed to open diplomatic relations with the Kingdom of Amber. He said the Realms of Adagalasck, being a primal realm in its own right, would happily accept a spot in the top 20 of Golden Circle Kingdom out of respect for the might of Amber. He said the warrior forces of Adagalasck were prepared to wage Red War on the forces of Azcala beside the forces of Amber. See why i want rum?"

  • Michael James Watson

"He offered to give me Farslayer at the time of the signing of Adagalasck's Golden Circle Treaty. Arlo actually laughed out loud in court."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer looks to Nina and says, "Since when was Hagalta named the High King of Adagalasck, Master of the Four Winds? I'm not sure he is authorized to make such a deal on behalf of the all the Adask people." Realmer says to Random.

  • Michael James Watson

ran-'Ya, i kind of figured that. But you should see the crown he has. and his forces have the shiniest armor. I'm guessing one of his queens took short cuts through shadow to outfit them. However, I'm going to make these people coming out of the woodwork your problem. So, until you are told otherwise you are the new Ambassador to Adagalasck from Amber.  Congratulations . You get a staff and a variety of other perks. Now..i have to go pull Flora down out of the rafters and find a few barrels of rum to help me enjoy the dungeons. "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Without batting an eye or pausing in the slightest, Realmer replies, "Then my second official act as Amber's Ambassador to Adagalasck will be to establish an Embassy where I will meet with Hagalta and handle this matter properly and knowledgeably. But my first act will be to meet with all the Masters and Mistresses of the Winds to learn more about the unreloved matter of the Reunion and the Severance, which may greatly affect the naming of a High King, which I must also learn more about. Please send Flora my personal apologies and feel free to send Haglata back home, Majesty."

  • Michael James Watson

random nods, "Excellent. i will inform him that you will be overseeing any negotiations concerning the Golden Circle treaty. Where will the Kingdom of Amber be establishing its embassy? "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Unsure at the moment, Majesty, but once I have established a temporary Embassy, I will contact you regarding the staff and let Hagalta and all other involved parties aware of its location. And if possible, could you send Bill Roth along, at least to help with set up and for a few other matters that his expertise will be needed."

  • Michael James Watson

Nina whispers, "The Stair of Blomsia. You can have a whole floor. I know just the one."

  • Michael James Watson

ran-"Yes. Good call. I'll get Roth to you asap. We do have a family problem of course. I'm going to solve one right now. And it will piss someone off really bad"

  • Michael James Watson

"I'm assigning Prince Julian as your military advisor and commander of the Embassy security forces. I have his #3 ranger in my dungeon right now and he tells me Julian only took his immortals. That's 300 security guards for his staff. I'm promoting Dalt to Warden of Arden. Hows that work for you?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"The Embassy will be at the Stair of Blomsia in the Shadow of Adagalasck, Majesty. The Mistress of the North Wind has kindly offered it."

  • Michael James Watson

Nina-"Primal realm, not shadow"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Forgive me, Arch Mage and Majesty; The Primal Realm of Adagalasck. My first day as Ambassador and already a faux pas." Realmer looks between Nina and Random then makes a decision, he reaches out to Nina makes physical contact then angles himself so Random can see her. "Majesty, may I present Ninaaratres, Arch Mage of the North Winds and Lady of Water. Arch Mage, King Random of Amber."

  • Michael James Watson

She moves close and bows slightly. "It is my pleasure to greet you in the name of Adagalasck. The Four Winds, of which Hagalta is one, will be happy to open a dialogue between our mutual Primal Realms. And..I look forward to speaking to you in person soon. We have been to long separated from kinship"

  • Michael James Watson

Random nods, 'And well met indeed. names out of legend. So much has changed in Amber since your short time here. There will need to be some sorting out of course.. But we will start with this Hagalta issue and see where the wind, as it were, go"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"I will be in contact as soon as possible, Majesty. And I'm not sure if I should thank you or curse you for the Ambassadorship, but either way I am sure it will help matters for all involved."

  • Michael James Watson

ran-"Yes, Well, there is an old carny saying. " If you want to get people off the roller coaster, stop it suddenly." OK, ill keep Hagalta here a few days, then have Benedict escort him back to you. Maybe even by trump. Tell Julian the good news" He breaks contact.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer turns to Nina, "Perhaps we should tell him together."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer will fill in the details for Nina and Julian at the same time, then will share the details with his team.

  • Michael James Watson

Julian is too happy to care about the demotion and the idea of being stationed here does appeal to him.

  • Michael James Watson

Jul-"Alright... Military advisor it is.. I heard a bit of it from Nina last night but ill need all the details. And of course how eager are we to fight. This isn't Amber's fight but i do know where i can hire an army or two if needed. i also know a few.. specialists ill get here soonest. I should call Benedict. Hes certainly pissed at me but he will be pragmatic about it. There are two people i should see first though...." Looking at Nina, who nods.

  • Michael James Watson

Gangdis, having been on the edge of things says, "Julian, do you really think the King will release Caine so easily? A warrior post is one thing but Spymaster is another"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"May I be privy to these people,Julian, if it involves our current situation? And speak with Sir Gangdis, my personal Military Advisor and Elite Guard about Hagalta's military might and the Shaxta's battle tactics, he was present for the battle drill. And Nina, it seems we will need to contact Emilie sooner rather than later... and Lord Trualta once again."

  • Michael James Watson

He takes Nina's hand. "the two are... our... ah.... spouses... Caine and Emilie...The four of us.. well we were all young together... and......"

  • Michael James Watson

Gangdis Mumbles, "Well, there is a 2000 year old bet i just lost"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer holds up a hand and says, "Say no more, I'm a romantic. Contact who you must, keep me appraised as it applies to diplomatic matters. Gan, I will need to speak with Carston about a CHAD contingent for the Embassy. And Julian, I would like to integrate my own 'specialist' in with your specialists, speak with Gan about her."

  • Michael James Watson

Carston tells you that the person you probably want to speak to in CHAD is Duke Fortunadas, 2nd of CHAD, Thrice Crowned Bard. He can contact him for you but to understand that to do so would be vastly above his pay grade. It might be easier to just visit the Palace Commons in Amber and name drop.

  • Michael James Watson

Julian tells you that all 300 of his troops agreed to the change of designation. a new challenge.

Ambassador Relmopator and The Embassy at Blomsia

  • Michael James Watson

In time the Love Boat docks at the City of Blomsia, in the region of Blomsia. Its Stair is massive and clearly ancient stretching into the heavy dark clouds. The land is icy and snowy but the people seem happy and industrious. The city is clearly designed to protect from the elements but the natives have the Calgary cool thing. Wearing short sleeves and short pants in snowy weather

  • Michael James Watson

The stair is wide and well trafficked. Clearly business goes on throughout it.

  • Michael James Watson

They greet Nina with adoration a step above what she had in the Wild grass region but clearly with great love. However they are shocked to the core to see Julian. He is not mentioned anywhere in their lore and she has never had a romantic linkage to her history. So seeing her prancing, kissing, Reclining in the arms of the man in the white armor is a universal shock to them all.

  • Michael James Watson

Yet they see his treatment of her and quickly accept him though with a great degree of ongoing surprise..

  • Michael James Watson

Passing through the city she is greeted by many people with official duties and she deals with them quickly. She introduces Julian as her husband and consort, and you as the Ambassador from Amber. Amber is an ancient legend but not a main part of their history

  • Michael James Watson

She goes to the second stair of her Stair. Each Shadow level is roughly 10 feet and a few degrees around the center circle. The center Circles seem to include residences, businesses, and what look like art museums. the second step opens into a vast cool lands, with a light blue sun. It is a large city stretching out to the horizon. She speaks to a factor who escorts the groups to a massive palace near the Stair entrance. It is a complex of thousands of buildings of various sizes in a roughly French 1500's style.

  • Michael James Watson

It is apparently unoccupied but looks as if it was recently vacated, undoubtedly displaces tens of thousands of people

  • Michael James Watson

"This will serve you well. The technology level has been maintained here at pre-electrical but you may furnish it as you will.

  • Michael James Watson

on the boat, a few days from landing, Carston said if he could be transferred to Amber, with a letter of intent, he could speak to CHAD. Perhaps Flora would assist in the transfer?

  • Michael James Watson

let you get your poodle.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer drafts a letter of intent for Duke Fortunadas and arranges the transfer through Flora, and gets Kevin  Realmer tells Carston to wait for him to make contact and to maintain contact with the Duke as 'The Ambassador's Personal CHAD representative'. Once in Blomsia, Realmer will use one of his personal Trumps to contact Carston to see as to his progress.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer will start small; one building and a few rooms for starters. He will let his current staff do what they do best without his interference, but will request regular reports.

  • Michael James Watson

you can make a contact trump for Carston, which will freak him out, but not a transport one

  • Michael James Watson

in the first week much activity occurs..

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

(he already has)

  • Michael James Watson

has what?

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

(made a contact trump for Carston and others)

  • Michael James Watson

at one point you and Julian, Nina and several of the various staff folk, rangers and Blomsia, as well as Gangdis are in the middle of a meeting over drinks and stories.. getting the embassy established etc.....

  • Michael James Watson

i don't remember making contact trumps but that's OK

  • Michael James Watson

when a Seneschal of Nina says she has visitors. And on his heels stride in Caine and a glowing blond woman. She looks less like her trump and more like a wild dreadlock girl, a very hippie vibe.. Young, a slight yellowish glow, tiny sparks of electricity off her. Caine looks the pirate king with a wide wicked grin

  • Michael James Watson

Nina goes stiff with a neutral face.. Julian stands, his armor in the bracer form.

  • Michael James Watson

the woman lightly dances up and embraces the startled Nina.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer stands when they enter but says nothing for the moment

  • Michael James Watson

She then places a very unsisterly kiss on Julian.

  • Michael James Watson

Caine walks up and puts a hand on Julian's shoulder, a gesture returned my him. As Julian is about to speak, Caine raises a finger to halt him.

  • Michael James Watson

Emilie steps in front of Nina. Kneeling, she places her forehead to the ground. her arms stretched out, her palms up. She leans back. looking up to Nina. "Wind of the North. I lay the Wind of the South at your feet and take you as my queen. My fires are yours to command.. As long as you recognize my Husband as my consort"

  • Michael James Watson

Nina kneels and embraces her sister, whispers in her ear, and stands.. She then places a very unsisterly kiss on Caine's lips. "Your powers of persuasion have not failed you Caine, I expected a long battle with Emilie"

  • Michael James Watson

Caine-"oh...battles will come. Just not this one. She is to much the flibbertigibbet to vie for your mothers crown. Well, Julian,Oberon must surely be sleeping with the Ancestors of Darkness to have the four of us in one room and he not raining down fire on us. "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Watch your tongue, cousin." Realmer says and looks up.

  • Michael James Watson

Caine turns to Realmer-"My tongue is my own and every word measured. We have spoken many times in official capacities and family dinners but i never thought to know you well till now. I consider myself in your debt even if my advantage came as a side matter in the walls you have kicked in. I am still Amber's man, but my work here will be under your embassy officially, if not actually"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Understood and appreciated, Caine. I welcome your help and input. Welcome to Adagalasck and thank you for coming." Realmer bows his head in respect to Caine.

  • Michael James Watson

he nods, 'I could have come as a tourist, but my wife was here. Every day of my life since Oberon sealed them in this prison i have held her card, seeking coldness. One day it was there and a moment later so was I. Now... Unofficially, would you like Hagalta hit? I know a place with a cement mixer running and deep holes in the desert they will never find him no matter how fast he regenerates."

  • Michael James Watson

Nina gasps, "By the Phoenix, i had forgotten how you speak, Bondmate"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"I'm unsure of what a 'cement mixer' is, but I definitely get the gist of your words and tone. No, I don't want him 'hit'; I would like to try to settle this diplomatically and by Amber and Adask Law, if possible. But knowing your offer exists quiets a part of my mind. I believe the matter of the Reunion and the Severance needs to be settled first and foremost. And the possibility of a member of the Amber Royal Family being held against her will must also be investigated and settled."

  • Michael James Watson

Caine, "If you insist. Of course This Hagalta isn't that tech savvy. We could arrange a meet along the jeweled road, get Vance to loan us a starship. Beam him and his whole cadre into deep space. No muss, no fuss, no coconuts. "

  • Michael James Watson

Nina looks to Julian," Whats that mean?"

  • Michael James Watson

Jules, "It means Caine has been drinking"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"If it were that simple a matter, Random would have already done it himself. No, by the books."

  • Michael James Watson

"Random has an abundance of good nature. but believe me cousin, he has slit throats in his time.. Oh.. speaking of which. I noticed someone coming in. Someone from amber.. Did you know you have a Snikura either stalking you, tracking you, observing you, or at the very least watching who comes and goes here?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"If you give me a description I may be able to tell you" he replies.

  • Michael James Watson

He reaches into a bag and pulls Tesa out by her heels. Struggling against a wrap binding. Caine looks at her, "Well, she's 5'1" with colorful and distracting hair. ah.. thin bodied but strong. Her fingerprints have been removed and replaced with Snikura sign markings. She has about 40 knives about her person and about 4000 gems. She tends to get angry when held up by her ankles and slapped against walls..Can I have her?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"No, you may not. Put her down gently, release her and return all her belongs that she did not steal from you; she works for me." Realmer keeps a straight face, not out of anger but to keep from laughing.

  • Michael James Watson

he nods, "You have hired Snikura? I think this is the beginning of a beautiful friendship for us, cousin. Random won't let me work with them. One thing first.." He brings her up to look in her eyes. 'Listen Snikura, no one kills in my presence without my say so. I don't give a tinker's damn if my cousin has hired you, bought you, bedded you, or cloned you. Kill in my presence without my permission and I'll plant you like potatoes. Get me?" Tesa nods. Caine drops her, recovering the wrap which disappears in his attire. Tesa walks off, and behind you. walking like a wet cat.

  • Michael James Watson

Caine-"So... Emilie.. shall we leave the good Ambassador to his plotting?"

  • Michael James Watson

Emilie-"No... Nina and I must talk.. there will be time now.. and a scent of lavender on the wind, my dear. Leave us be."

  • Michael James Watson

Tesa is annoyed.. but you are the only Amberites she has dealt with till Gangdis brought her to you.

  • Michael James Watson

Boxing out of her weight category.

  • Michael James Watson

i watched a heavy weight fight a featherweight. there was lots of running around till the heavy weight landed a blow. then it was like an Christmas inflatable Santa losing its air.

  • Michael James Watson

Carston, Flora, Kevin and Fort

  • Michael James Watson

Carston, Flora, Kevin and For

  • Michael James Watson

after a bit of time and work done, furniture imported and no word from Hagalta, There is a trump contact

  • Michael James Watson

Did bill go with Carston?

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer braces for impact as always, but allows the contact. "Who calls?" (No, thought Bill would be coming back with Carston and others)

  • Michael James Watson

Ten days passes in the North Stair after Carston left. Time distances being what they are that's a day in Amber. Early the 11th day there is a trump contact.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer braces for impact as always, but allows the contact. "Who calls?"

  • Michael James Watson

"Flora and what the fried fishes of Hell have you gotten yourself in to? I've have a strange collection of people here ready to come to you."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Ah, Flora, so good to see a friendly face. It seems I have been named Amber's Ambassador to Adagalasck and must clean up a mess here; a mess that I am a part of like it or not. I do so appreciate your help in this matter. And I am sorry for any inconveniences you suffered due to Hagalta and his followers; his visit to Amber could be partially my fault."

  • Michael James Watson

"Oh the Hagalta matter is an interesting one for me. His people were being disagreeable but not unusually so. New diplomats have their egos. I got most of the soldiers sort out by assigning them a barracks in South Riding. I may owe you an apology though considering your father. I didn't know Hagalta was your father. He apparently thought i was a servant. He and that Orc wife of his thought they could drag me into their quarters for a tumble. It didn't go well for them.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer chuckles lightly and smiles. "You do not owe me an apology for anything you said or did to Hagalta and his first wife; he is not my father nor she my mother... and it sounds like they deserved what they got." His smile widens and he gives Flora a wink. "Though Hagalta's second wife, Satura, is my mother and an Amberite of the Royal Family... I must check on her well being soon... as the Ambassador of Amber it is my duty. I noticed a 10 to 1 ratio of time between Adagalasck and Amber, please let Random know I will contact him tomorrow regarding Hagalta and the Amber Embassy here... that should give me enough time to sort a few more things out."

  • Michael James Watson

"Fair enough.. I assumed Hagalta was talking out of his digestive tract and his wife is going to really have to tone her shit down if he expects to be around town. Ill make her life a squishy messy hell. So, are you ready for this circus to come across?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"As ready as I can be; send them through. And is Kevin ready? I have missed him so."

  • Michael James Watson

"Yes. And he has been snapping to go.

  • Michael James Watson

The Trump gate opens and Carston is first across. He is dressed better then usual and has a wildly uncomfortable look on his face. Behind him is a fox fur clad fancy fop with a fancy hat bearing three Saint of Battle sigils. With him is a well dressed but somehow disreputable looking hobbit. A man dressed like a carny gambler in a bowler hat and a plain but strong looking man in casual clothes. A hefty red haired woman in somewhat clerical carrying several wood cases in straps over her shoulder.. Lastly a Centaur, in Rearden uppperbody plate. Flora holds Kevin, dressed in a body harness. Lastly comes around the corner, Xorit, in traveling clothes and arms ., looking a bit sour, steps up and presses past Flora to cross the trump barrier Flora holds Kevin “I don't know what you are involved in, but if you don't mind, id like to come across as well. “

  • Michael James Watson

where are you by the way? the ocean view balcony of the embassy?

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Sure. Ocean view balcony sounds perfect. He takes Kevin once everyone is through. "I would welcome your presence and advice. I thought Bill Roth was coming too? Will Random be sending him later?" Realmer asks as he extends a hand to Flora.

  • Michael James Watson

Xorit turns, "Yes, Roth will be here. He is in the middle of something at Wet Wendal's. 10 to one here, the ratio to Taxorami, " he looks at a wrist watch on his arm, then up again. "Call it two hours here. He will be bringing Benedict as well who wishes to see Nina and Emilie."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Excellent. Welcome back home" Realmer says to Xorit and extends his hand to greet his friend.

  • Michael James Watson

Xorit steps to a table and removes his sword. Setting it on the table and taking his hand from it. Xorit shifts to reveal Arloxedra.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Sightblinder." Realmer says. "So, what can I do for you, Arloxedra? What brings you to Adagalasck?"

  • Michael James Watson

Arlo smiles, picking up the blade again but remaining Arlo. "Intellectual curiosity. Random and I spoke and he suggested i take the time to appreciate the situation here. Not your embassy, and congratulations and condolences on that Regency, by the way. Mostly to explore it, and not to get in the way. He has prepared me to be able to notice certain things."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Well, feel free to observe and explore as you will." Realmer says to Arlo then turns his attention to the CHAD contingent and Carston, whom he address first. "Sir Carston; well done. Thank you for setting this up for me." Then he turns his attention to the rest of the contingent. "I believe some introductions are in order." He gestures towards a large table with several chairs on the balcony overlooking the sea. "I am Lord Relmopator, Amber's Ambassador to the Primal Realm of Adagalasck."

  • Michael James Watson

Carston, nods, “ allow me to introduce Duke Sir Fortunadas of the Fox Glens. I'll let him introduce his companions. “

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer will be petting Kevin while talking with those present, almost absent mindedly. He will try for Flora to be sitting next to him.

  • Michael James Watson

Fort steps up, "Ambassador, its my distinct pleasure to help facilitate CHAD's assistance.. I consider it an extension of our contract with Amber so of course its costs are covered. With me is my assistant Lord Hibbit the Boggie, Sir Cantor, "pointing to the centaur, " Baron Ascorbic and his companion Boxlifter. The lady is Dame Shana Anor, a Cleric of Dolki. Shall we seek some shade to discuss your needs? "

  • Michael James Watson

Fort rubs Kevin's chin and he practically coos.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer raises an eyebrow, then turns to look at Flora then returns his gaze to Fort. "Sure, let's take this inside. I will have Refreshments brought and we can get down to business." He leads them to a meeting room and tells one of the staff along the way, to have food and drink brought as soon as possible.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

And if Gangdis is not near by, as he usually is, he will send word for him to come to the meeting room. He will also send word to Julian to join him, if he is not otherwise preoccupied.

  • Michael James Watson

he is there.

  • Michael James Watson

Julian shows up fairly quickly. He steps in and comes to attention in shock... "Oberon!!! If you come to take me to task for Nina then you will have to slay me if you think to deny me to her again!" He draws his blade, runes glittering, his armor shifting over his body. Caine steps in having heard Julian, looking toward Arloxedra.... "Ah.... Mother?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Arloxedra, will you please remove that sword."

  • Michael James Watson

Arlo chuckles, "the vagaries of magic...Gentleman, behind whatever guise you see it is Arloxedra bearing Sightblinder. I wasn't intending to stay. Good day Uncles..." Arlo steps around beside a angry Julian as he exists the doorway and leaves to the wide lands of Blomsia

  • Michael James Watson

Julian-"that's a nasty piece of magic. First one of those famous swords I've seen."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer lets out a sigh and shakes his head in exasperation. "And the others are even nastier; Hagalta bears Farslayer, as I have seen with my own eyes. Thank you for joining me... both of you."

  • Michael James Watson

Fort-"Yes, it was a rather nasty shock for me as well. It took some effort to bypass the effect and that was only by intellectualizing it. "

  • Michael James Watson

Caine walks over to Fort, "Well met, Fort. Why are you here for a simply troop issue? Kind of over powering the situation isn't it?"

  • Michael James Watson

Shaking hands with Caine he laughs, a musical laugh, "Well, Its hard to call this a casual gathering for a mere troop management issue considering the company, my lord Prince, and Prince, and Princess and departed Prince, and Lordly Ambassador. surely its just us folks...."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer chuckles. "He and his company are here at my request. I do not think it 'over-powering the situation' since I am still unaware of the entire situation here in Adagalasck. Plus, I am familiar with Hagalta's temper and rash actions and thought to be prepared for the worst."

  • Michael James Watson

Fort-"To be sure.. Now.. Lets find a table. Lets start with broad strokes... What are you looking for? Ambassador Security? Infiltration of the local guilds? Criminal influence? Open warfare?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer gestures to the table and chairs in the meeting room, there may even be food and drinks waiting by now. "Embassy security, for starters. Criminal influence and open warfare are to be AVOIDED at all costs."

  • Michael James Watson

Hibbit-"So don't call it criminal influence, call it fact finding with a side of profit."

  • Michael James Watson

Fort-"My understanding was that you had a clan war of some sort starting?

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer narrows his eyes at Hibbit and says, "Information gathering will be essential, but the profit comes in the form of your payment." He looks to Fort, "A potential Clan War. The Reunion and Severance could unite the Clans or descend them into war, depending on the outcome. I am looking to defend the Embassy, if needed, from such a Clan War or Clan attack against the Embassy. There is a lot of space here within the Embassy itself and plenty of room for more troops."

  • Michael James Watson

"Reunion and Severance? "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer explains the local political situation as best he can, including who is involved and what has transpired recently that may have an effect on the matter.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

He looks to each at the table as he speaks, engaging each in his oration.

  • Michael James Watson

Hibbit-"So you are are in favor of Reunion with your Xorit on top then?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"I am. The Arch Mage of the North Wind has already said as much herself, though she may not have officially announced it to her people yet. I feel Xorit a better choice to represent his Clan and the Adask people if there is to be a treaty of any sort with Amber."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"The Mistress of the South Wind supports her sister, the Arch Mage of the North Wind and will most likely follow her lead. Lord Trualta, the Horse Lord, has historically supported Hagalta's Clan, but he would not share bread, or drink or trade salt with the man."

  • Michael James Watson

fort-"This place look huge. How about we start with a thousand standard guards. Most with some adventuring experience but no wanderlust or ambition. A few specialists? ?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer looks to Julian and Caine, then Gangdis. "What do my advisors advise?"

  • Michael James Watson

Julian "We want defense on offense. Someone without ambition. Is Sir Arin available? "

  • Michael James Watson

Fort smiles_"Yes, King Arin would be a fine Force Commander. he would serve well and know what specialists are needed for a specific occasion. A good choice.. ah.. of course Taroos will come too. He might mix with the Adask well"

  • Michael James Watson

Caine nods, "I've met him. He led the CHAD forces at the Battle of Trudana Felik"

  • Michael James Watson

The woman makes a tiny cough. Fort snaps to look at her. They stare at each other a few moments then turns back. Fort smiles " and Dame Shana Anor would like to join the Force as well."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Of course. I have heard of the Clerical Forces. Healing skills and magics are always welcome." Realmer smiles and bows his head respectfully to Dame Shana Anor.

  • Michael James Watson

She looks to Fort. he nods. "We should check. Ah... Box, do you mind the experiment? "

  • Michael James Watson

Box nods, walks over to the cleric. He slits his palm. She takes his hand and bows over it.. feeling the warmth the hand heals. Box nods"It worked, Fort"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer raises an eyebrow and watches with interest; he likes experiments that he is not directly a part of.

  • Michael James Watson

Caine-"Damn....Who.. who do you worship, Lady? "

  • Michael James Watson

Box says,. "Dame Shana is of the Dolkian faith. Dolki the god of warriors and Farmers. The Lord of the Militia"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Dame Shana, you and your Clerics are most welcome. But let us respect the cultures of the Adask people and not try to convert them... unless they wish it freely. No offense, but in my adventuring days I always traveled with one cleric or another and they invariably would attempt to convert the locals."

  • Michael James Watson

She looks to Ascorbic. a moment passes. Ascorbic say_"Yes, yes of course dear. Box and I will stay too. Worry not Lord, the Dolkian Faith in particular and the Tosian Pantheon in general is not an evangelical one. Nor are they interested in converts. In truth, several of the gods of the Tosian faith are Members of CHAD themselves though none are in this room. Though Venki maybe come by someday. He travels, eh Fort?"

  • Michael James Watson

Fort nods, "Yes... It will be hard to keep Jeremy away once word gets around. Lets start then with Force Commander Arin, Sir Tarooos, Shana here, Ascorbic & Boxlifter, and a solid security detail. "

  • Michael James Watson

Caine-"All under CHAD contract.. None of Alexandir Kos Korag's kingdom forces.. Random may have hired them but they don't need to be here."

  • Michael James Watson

Fort nods, "Of course.. The Kos Korag forces are ambitious. We keep separate of them. Also none of the Savior Slayers,"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Yes, let's keeps this a CHAD business arrangement with Amber; there are enough political and religious issues already."

  • Michael James Watson

Cantor asks-"Would you like a small team of mounted cavalry? for honor guards or for... special needs? I have 50 pairs ready that would like to volunteer. If centaurs are not common here they can be quite effective.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer looks to Gangdis but responds, "Yes, I believe cavalry would be helpful."

  • Michael James Watson

Cantor-"Excellent. 50 Centaurs, 50 Warrior mounts. Armed for archery, Charge and Melee. Well dressed."

  • Michael James Watson

Gangdis nods his approval.

  • Michael James Watson

Fort-"Ill make a call. I anticipated your needs. Our forces will be reading quickly.. Cantor's forces are ready now. "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Excellent. Coordinate everything through Julian or Caine."

  • Michael James Watson

Fort nods. "Princes, if one of you could go to the Palace Commons. We can effect the transfer. Ill trump Lop to let him know. "

  • Michael James Watson

negotiations seem concluded.

  • Michael James Watson

Flora seems to have walked out to a secluded part of the balcony. Caine and Julian decide among them that Caine should return to Amber since Julian is in a bit of hot water.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer leaves Julian and Caine to sort out the military matters and he joins Flora on the balcony.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Of course, he says his polite goodbyes to everyone at the table before exiting the area.

  • Michael James Watson

Flora nods as you approach..."Its a strange realm.. This is a shadow. easy enough to tell. It seems a bit..unreal. Yet below i see its residents living their lives oblivious to the forces around them. In this room even. Sometimes being of Amber is a hard thing.. I can feel the realm beyond.. So like Amber.. Real.. a shade away from the realm of its inscription. and... something.... oppressive.. electric.. is in the air"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Actually, this Shadow may be a Primal Realm. Nina tells me that this place is ancient and may have existed before Amber, a bastion against Chaos... a failed attempt at what Amber later became." He pauses a moment then continues. "And that... 'feeling'... may be the Squiggle here; a part of an Inscription of Power, a part of Calmir, a place that existed before Amber, tied to Paragon.. again according to Nina. I have felt the crackle in the air and the underlying sense of power since I arrived and it gives me an odd sense of comfort."

  • Michael James Watson

Flora."I was never deeply interested in cosmology. Calmir..Besides its inclusion in Random's Trump Deck. I know little of it. I've never met Nina, nor Emilie. Its more curiosity that brought me here. Its an interesting place. I remember Oberon speaking of it long ago. Something about having sealed it from outsiders entering it and insiders from contacting those outside.. His fanaticism about consanguinity seemed to make him lock the realm away. He interfered with my ...person relations along those lines.. I have wondered what Nina's opinion on the matter"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer tries not to smile. "So you don't know about Caine and Julian?" He asks coyly.

  • Michael James Watson

"Which part? The things i know about them is not a small list"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"If you hang about here long enough I'm sure you will find out, but I would appreciate your discretion none the less. Julian is wed to Nina and Caine is wed to Emilie" he says nonchalantly.

  • Michael James Watson

She nods, "Yes, that ... Its not technically a wedding. Its a druidic right among the Amber deep wood fey.. It isn't strictly speaking binding. Like a marriage between Amberites in shadow.. And i know for a fact Caine didn't consider it enough too require his fidelity.. He married me in Shadow after all ,"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer raises an eyebrow

  • Michael James Watson

"Though their foursome was formal enough that Oberon tried having it annulled in Court."

  • Michael James Watson

"Surprised? Why? We seek partners for many reasons.. 'I'm considered lusty. But who can match the passion of an Amberite? Shadow dwellers? The Golden Circle have many lust paramours... but its hard to match ones passions. Its been fairly common really.. I've been with Caine, Gerard and Brand for short term relationships in shadow.. Even had a brief fling with Deirdre when i was young.. Our lives are long and contain many things"

  • Michael James Watson

"Corwin and Deirdre tried very hard to gain acceptance of their bonding early on. Now they are King and Queen of a primal realm"

  • Michael James Watson

"And of course.. There was Eric..."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"I guess it would make sense that we would seek our own when all else pales in comparison over time. Eric?"

  • Michael James Watson

Turning and hopping up to sit on the balcony wall. "Eric would tumble anyone wiling to present. He was strictly interested in women and he cut a swath through the daughters of the nobility.. He was devoted to his wife but he was hardly monogamous. During his reign embassies to the kingdom always included attractive and flexible diplomat's aides meant to catch his eye."

  • Michael James Watson

"He tried me many times. Sober and drunk. But he... well, i was part of his Cabal but only out of practicality. I always found him a bit repulsive in his treatment of women. "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Well, all these 'family matters' lead me to believe even more in the rumor I have heard; that Vox, daughter of Oberon ,may be the woman I knew as Verna, my grandmother and 'wife' of Dworkin. But that has yet to be proven. And there is still the matter of my mother; an Amberite possibly being held against her will. Once Bill Roth gets here, I would appreciate it if you would join us, along with Nina and Emilie if they are available, to discuss the legal matters concerning her."

  • Michael James Watson

"Mark my word.. Chaos has some by blows of my brothers. The time we spent in Chaos after the battle of Patternfall was full of interested playmates for them"

  • Michael James Watson

"Vox? Who told you Vox might be your grandmother?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Arloxedra was the first to mention it. But since talking to Nina she has hinted it may indeed be possible."

  • Michael James Watson

"Well, i suppose it wouldn't surprise me. He was willing to mate with the Unicorn i suppose a dragon isn't impossible. Of course the Unicorn was almost certainly in human form. I've seen her.. quite a beauty. But Dworkin, whatever else he may be, was a Lord of Chaos. "

  • Michael James Watson

"The thing might be the timing... Were you born long before Patternfall? I never asked"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Well, grandfather... Dworkin, never said exactly... but I've narrowed it down to just after Dworkin helped Corwin escape the dungeons of Amber... if Corwin's tale is to be trusted and my grandparents' and mother's account of their past is factual. Montagar, the Shadow of my birth, is a very fast time Shadow compared to Amber. As Dworkin and Verna and Satura told the tale to me as a small child; grandfather left his homeland and met grandmother shortly after arriving in Montagar, their only child came soon after. Satura married young to a knight, Sir Kandith, and soon after I was born."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Piecing it all together, the timing of Dworkin's departures and his visits in my childhood and adult life, to the events of my life up to now, I feel my timing is about right. Pre-Pattern Fall, but certainly during the time of the Black Road."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"And you are not the first to mention him being 'of Chaos' and a Shapeshifter. It seems I am more like him than the rest of the family."

  • Michael James Watson

"We didn't know he was our relative during those days. Not till after Patternfall. We learned a lot in Chaos.. My time there.. was enlightening.. Creatures of great power. We even saw the Serpent of Chaos.. It greeted Dworkin. In a friendly manner.. It asked Dworkin if it had seen its sister? I don;t know but might the primal bests consider each other siblings? .. Could Vox be a Sister of the Serpent? Dragon, not Serpent? Not a child of Oberon? "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"There is that possibility; I have not studied the Primal Creatures enough to know for sure. The Serpent could have as easily been referring to the Unicorn according to your Primal Sibling Theory. But it would seem Dworkin might know." Realmer continues, sounding a bit nostalgic. "And since I was raised away from Amber, I knew nothing of the rest of his family... my family. And since Dworkin was my teacher in the ways of Amber, Chaos and all in between, prior to me coming to Amber, I was unaware that none of the family knew he was its progenitor. And since coming to Amber I have learned much about my Amberite heritage and Amber's history... but more just keeps seeping out of the cracks in some of the most unexpected places. Perhaps a visit or call to my revered grandfather will be in my near future."

  • Michael James Watson

"Its curious that with a marred pattern, a road from Chaos to Amber, war on the foot, Oberon in shadow and Eric on the throne, that Dworkin would take the time to escape his prison and go off into shadow to mate and raise a family. Seems odd. Verna....Hmm... it seems i should know that name..Something religious... Not unicorn faith....Something Ivor said..

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"After coming to Amber I learned that was the period called his 'time of madness', due to the damage to the Pattern. I can tell you that the man that raised me as a small child then left, is not the man that later came back and taught me Magic and about the Universe. Looks the same, sounds the same, but a somewhat different personality. I get the impression he did not know who he truly was during his time in Montagar."

  • Michael James Watson

"Didn't know who he was... so perhaps he did not chose who he mated with. Perhaps She sought him out? Perhaps the circumstances were innocent enough.. Perhaps she was the what the director of the conception with a willing lusty madman.... Her motives might be as important as anything.."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"I agree, if she is my grandmother, her motives were and are surely important. Perhaps my mother could shed some enlightenment on the situation. I surely hope to be able to speak with her before Hagalta's return, but first I must speak with Nina and Emilie and Bill on legal matters."

  • Michael James Watson

"Arlo said he would be along directly.. Shall i check on him?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"It has been about two hours or so... Perhaps you should."

  • Michael James Watson

She withdraws a Trump. Concentrating it opens. She speaks to it briefly. Promptly Bill Roth steps through, followed by Benedict.

  • Michael James Watson

Bill nods to Ben and walks over. "Random said you needed my help?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Yes, Lord Roth, thank you for coming. Good to see you again." Realmer extends a hand to Bill to shake it. "I recall that you are Amber's legal specialist and I could use your help with a Family matter and the matter of a possible treaty between Amber and Adagalasck."

  • Michael James Watson

"Busy days. Alright. Well,..... ill need to consult with the legal authorities here to research the state of things.. Alright.. see how they do things.. And the Family matter?'

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"My mother, Satura, daughter of Dworkin; she might be being held against her will by Lord Hagalta, her husband. As Amber's Ambassador to Adagalasck, it is my duty to check on the well being of any member of the Royal Family of Amber residing here, isn't it?"

  • Michael James Watson

"Hagalta... Well, he is a problem... One we've just discovered. Ben? " Ben had been speaking with Flora looks over, the two walk over. Ben's face is dark, even for him. He usually radiates calm. No he is radiating anger

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer wills himself and his Robe not to move away from Benedict. He keeps his face calm, "Marshall Benedict." He bows his head to Ben.

  • Michael James Watson

"I've heard a good deal of the problems concerning Hagalta today. Lord Realmer, It may be that Satura had good reason to Trust him. To the best of your knowledge she is in this realm? She certainly was not with Hagalta in Amber, his other wife was. You did not know him in your youth? Are you certain?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"To the best of my knowledge, provided by the Arch Mage of the North, Ninaaratres; yes, Satura is within this realm. And I did not know Hagalta at all prior to meeting him for the first time several years ago with Aries Colbreisi... nor did I know that my mother lived or had remarried prior to that meeting. To the best of my knowledge and memories, my father is Sir Kandith of Montagar, I have memories of him. He died while I was still a child." After a pause he says, "Though it is possible that my memories have been altered... but considering the number of times I have walked the Pattern, I'm sure any memory alteration would have become apparent by now."

  • Michael James Watson

Ben nods, "He had a very eventful week in Amber. Barged in to Court, announced himself king of a realm he was at best a regional governor and member of a wizards council for. Said he would settle for a GCST as long as it was in the top twenty. Demanded lodgings for 3000, accepted royal honor he seemed to not have earned, threatened to visit Azcala if denied, wore Farslayer open and mentioned how he would hate to use it, and made a pass at a princess. Then his forces suddenly withdrew, in amazingly good order, and at the gallop off down the Jeweled road. Made quite a display of it." Flora asks-"They left? I just got them tucked away a few hours ago Amber time."

  • Michael James Watson

Ben nods," Yes, they left less then two hours ago in Amber. I've been at Halzir speaking to a source with Bill when i heard Quite showy it seems. Horns, howling songs..And all of it a distraction from what i found out a few moments before you Trumped me, sister"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Well, do tell, cousin. Do tell." Realmer is eager to learn more of Hagalta's ways.

  • Michael James Watson

"While his entourage and honor guard were fleeing down the Jeweled Road, he assaulted Galvar while he was serving duty as Pattern Guard in the dungeons and assayed the pattern. and completed it."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer stares at Benedict blankly for several moments as the implications of this new development process. "Well, that complicates matters considerably... on several fronts." Realmer shakes his head and sighs.

  • Michael James Watson

Ben nods, "Quite. He is almost certainly Satura's brother. Do you have a Trump for her? If not making one might be worth the effort now that the trump and access restriction here seems removed. and since we are in the realm"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer pulls out her Trump, the one Arlo gave him when he mentioned that Satura's Trump and some other's would be in the Deck soon. He shows it to Ben, then looks around the room at everyone present.

  • Michael James Watson

Ben-"That looks like a KRD card.." Flora takes out her deck and sorts through it. Flora-"Its in the Deck.. "amount

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Shall I try now? Guess it's as good a time as any. Got plenty of back up." Realmer looks at the image of his mother's face on the card in his hand... whether he intended to or not, he stares and stares trying to make contact.

Dwynwen and The Augury

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Relmopator stands on a balcony overlooking the sea just outside a meeting room in the Amber Embassy of Adagalasck at the Stair of Blomsia, the home of the Arch Mage of the North, Ninaaratres. Standing close at hand are Flora, Benedict and Bill Roth... Sir Gangdis is certainly nearby. Realmer stares at the image on the Trump Card in his hand; a new card in the King Random Deck. The image is that of his mother, Satura; daughter of Dworkin and Verna. Realmer studies her features as depicted on the card; her very pale, bordering on translucent skin... her lovely platinum blonde hair pulled back over one shoulder and over one ear but draped over her other shoulder and falling down amongst her modest cleavage showing over a soft pale blue dress... her long nose, but not overly so, much like his own... below, her lips barely pink against the pale skin surrounding them; more normal flesh tone than the skin but pinkish by comparison... and her eyes, just like his own... he stared into those soft yet penetrating eyes... pale blue scleras, reddish pink irises, and even the pupil had a pinkish sheen to it. Relmopator keeps staring into those eyes, eyes like his own.... pushing for contact, longing for contact, hoping for contact... it has been far too long since he has seen his mother and it is time that changed.

  • Michael James Watson

A fluttering sense of something crosses the vales of perception.. It scratches. It feel sluggish.. forced.. Suddenly the contact comes, It opens to a pale woman, with white hair and red eyes. But her appearance is more focused and adversarial. She seems less distant, and more militant. “That took some time. I was expecting to hear from you the moment you passed the Arch. It took weeks. I watcher the little caravan crossing the world. Satura is indisposed at the moment but if you wish to speak you can pull me through. Its been a long time since I was in Bosania. Or you can come to me. The choice is yours.” She extends a hand .

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer finds it odd that he reached his half-sister and not his mother, but he is not surprised. When he addresses her he does so politely and verbally, so those present in the room can know what is going on as well. "Ah, Dwynwen, I believe it is; I have recently learned that you are my half-sister. I was not expecting to contact you, but well met none the less. I am Lord Relmopator, Amber's Ambassador to Adagalasck... most people call me Realmer. Political and Family matters dictated the delay in contacting, but I would be very pleased to speak with you now. Please, come to me and enjoy my hospitality and that of the Amber Embassy. And the opportunity to meet some of my Amber relatives who are currently present." Realmer turns so that those in the room are now behind him and Dwynwen can see who is present upon arrival. He extends his right hand, takes her extended hand and pulls her through, then turns to stand at her side and face those in the room. "May I introduce you to Benedict, Marshall of Amber; Florimel, Amber's Chief of Protocol; Bill Roth, Counsel to the Court of Amber and Sir Gangdis, my Military Advisor and Elite Bodyguard." He indicates each with a gesture as he introduces them, then he says, "And may I introduce all of you to Dwynwen, Daughter of Satura."

  • Michael James Watson

Stepping through, she takes a few steps to distance her from the people on the balcony. Flora smile and says, “Its a pleasure to meet you dear. “ Ben nods. Gangdis steps back, distancing himself. “Kinsmen? Is that what you are? And what courtesy does that gain me? In my experience kin are more dangerous then strangers.” Ben chuckles, “That is a defensible position. Let us say at this point that it gains you the time to decide if we are dangerous.” “I do not need that time. Now, Realmer, we seem to have a issue between us. What do you propose we do to solve it? My auguries show a war coming. And my Father is growing enraged. Our mother is resting. My bond mother is fairly active and is looking forward to the war. And she has a place ready in our great hall to have your stuffed corpse displayed.. It looks like I could make a contribution to the décor now if I chose. A Prince or Princess of Amber would look lovely next to my sister Drixtra. “ She smiles at the Elders. Flora looks horrified while Ben has a slight smile on his face

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer takes a deep breath and let's is out slowly while he internally debates returning the threat... but decides against it. He turns to his half-sister and smiles. "Charming. I'm sure she does. And yes, we have an issue; Hagalta. I believe a war is coming soon as well, and that Hagalta is the sole reason it will happen. But hopefully it can be averted... IF he is willing to come here and talk with me and other representatives of Amber and Adagalasck. We need to know what he wants and why and how he intends to support his claim. I also need to know that Satura is well, and not being held against her will or being coerced."

  • Michael James Watson

She nods, moving to the balcony's rail. Twiddling her finger on the flat surface. “War is a means to an end. Father wants many things. He grasps them wildly. In my auguries he has gained one of his wildest fantasies recently. Not sure what else he is interested in but I can look if you are interested.” Running a hand through her milky white hair, tugging on a braid she smiles “ I doubt he is interested in being friendly. If the Reunion fails he is willing to slay the rest of his clan till only his supporters remain. As for Amber, there are ways around it too.” Walking to the table and sitting, she lightly moves things to clear a two foot area and toys it with her fingers. “As for mother.. He won't release her till someone stuffs him and stands him up beside my sister. I'd be interested in hearing them. He might trade mother for one of these two princelings. Care to stone bind one for him?”

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

The moment Realmer notices her 'twiddling her fingers', he tunes in with his Psyche, very lightly and subtly so she won't notice his prying. He is looking for use of Magic or Powers or other Psychic Emanations. He does listen to her words carefully while gently observing and probing with his Psyche.

  • Michael James Watson

She is using the Adagalasck inscription. Setting spells in place. And she does not seem to be trying to hide it.

  • Michael James Watson

after the table twiddling, she looks up, smiling..

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Can Realmer tell what spells, or type of spells she was working?

  • Michael James Watson

the one on the balcony is a place setter, identifying the location. The other looks like some kind of vision or scrying spell.

  • Michael James Watson

her question stands..

  • Michael James Watson

Flora mumbles.. "He stuffed your sister? "

  • Michael James Watson

She looks up, "well, only partly. She actually stone bound. He unbinds her from time to time. But she is far less trouble as a statue"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"You are bold to set your spells so openly. And no, I don't want to Stone Bind anyone here for Hagalta." Realmer says archly, knowing Bob is watching from nearby, a Magic Drain Spell or Process Snuff PW at the ready. "I appreciate your candor on Hagalta and his mindset; I have felt that he would be very difficult to deal with, based on my limited interactions with him. But I must ask, what is your intent here, Dwynwen? And what is your stance in all of this? Whom do you support or oppose?"

  • Michael James Watson

“My stance? Well, I am the only holder of the inscription of Adagalasck on this balcony and my spells are potent enough to shave the hair off all of you. Luckily I am not interested in that this evening. . So I would guess my stance is one of strength. As for my interests...I'd like to survive the war, Command the Odaraxta united, have my mother looked at by the best sorcerer available to figure out her problem, stick my bond mother's head on a pike, and hear my father's deathcurse. Hopefully who ever killed him will have pissed him off enough that he won't waste his curse on me, mother, and my half sister Drixtra. If we can throw Xorax into the fire that would be good for everyone. In the short term, a few drops of the royal blood on this balcony would let us peek in on where ever Hagalta is now.” she raises a tiny sigil of Adagalasck, the size of her palm, over the frame on the table. “Is there any wine around? “

  • Michael James Watson

"Oh... Id like to walk the Pattern of Amber. But I'm patient."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Quite a list of interests. And I am sure Hagalta's death curse will be leveled at me, most likely. His hatred for me seems deep despite our limited interactions. As for a few drops of Royal Blood, yours should do nicely. If you are the daughter of Satura then you are the granddaughter of Dworkin the same as those here. I'm not so sure anyone else would be willing to give up their blood, including myself. And yes, I believe there is a half opened bottle of wine at the far end of the table."

  • Michael James Watson

She walks to the bottle and takes a chug, then dribbles a few drops on the frame. if frosts over. She cuts her finger with a a fingernail. Dropping a few drops on it.

  • Michael James Watson

"Mine's in. Next? "

  • Michael James Watson

Ben frowns, walking up to the Table and examining it. Flora looks concerned, "Realmer, how wise is this?

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer mind walks the pattern and brings up the sigil before him, he looks over exactly what she is doing and any other spells she may have hung. He tries to determine the exact nature of her spell and whether there is any danger to those present.

  • Michael James Watson

Ben withdraws and takes out his trump deck

  • Michael James Watson

The spell looks potent, but unfamiliar..Its powerful scrying magic with unfamiliar powerpoints.

  • Michael James Watson

Flora, looks Realmer over.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"It is a potent scrying spell, of that there is no doubt. But there are other aspects of it that I do not fully understand so I am loathe to proceed until I know more."

  • Michael James Watson

She laughs, "Well alright brother, I'll take you as an apprentice if that is your wish. I've about 20,000 vials in my quarters that will need cleaning first. "

  • Michael James Watson

Gangdis snorts

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Why so insulting, HALF-sister? Were you not taught manners by OUR mother? Or are you solely YOUR father's daughter?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

((each capitalized word is only slightly emphasized))

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

((Realmer has not dropped the Sigil of the Pattern... it still hangs before him))

  • Michael James Watson

"What i was taught would horrify you. And if it did not horrify you then making cause with Amber is not much of a trade. I will put an end to Hagalta and Uxtrasa one way or another. The only reason we are speaking now is that the two of them are trapped beyond the Arch. My auguries are powerful but they won't cross the arch. I have the chance to delve with the blood of 4 of the house Barimen? That might cross the Arch"

  • Michael James Watson

From the doorway comes, "Five"

  • Michael James Watson

Nina walks onto the balcony. Dwynwen stands, "Mistress of the North Wind" bowing. "One of the West Wind was brought here by the permission of this one." Pointing to Realmer, " I did not steal my way in by stealth"

  • Michael James Watson

Nina nods, "I know, Dear. The marshal of Amber informed me of your presence though i was already aware.. You marked my Stair. I will decide if that marking remains. Now, Realmer, what is the meaning of this?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer drops the Sigil of the Pattern before speaking. "I brought her here to talk; I was attempting to contact Satura, to check on her well being, but instead I reached Dwynwen. She offered to talk with me and gave me the choice of locations; I thought it best to bring her here, considering the current company. She put together her spells on her own, then asked if we wanted to help find Hagalta's whereabouts, I was looking things over to make sure it was safe as you came in."

  • Michael James Watson

Nina, "Well they are not safe, but potent. Dwynwen, it has been a long time since you graced my Stair. my offer of sanctuary remains. You should know that my sister and I are saddened to hear of the Treatment the West Wind places upon her. When war comes she will certainly be freed. Now... You have an augury frame.. Who shall guide it?"

  • Michael James Watson

dwy stretches up, "Thank you for your concern.. I had intended Lord Realmer to guide the frame once i had opened it. We have two people to search for, but the potency of this company could make it able to pierce many a vale of the past, present and future. I have a Rock Paragon to place in it to press the power forward. Do you approve?"

  • Michael James Watson

Nina nods, "There is one other Amberite in residence. i was in conference with him when Ben called. Three others are currently out of touch on one of the secluded Stair, one i will be returning to soon. Shall I summon him, Lord Realmer? That would make six."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Yes, please do. I feel more is better in this endeavor."

  • Michael James Watson

From around the corner enters King Random.

  • Michael James Watson

Though Flora looks surprised. Ben scowls.. the others have strange looks

  • Michael James Watson

Random places his blade on the Table, and resolves into Arloxedra, Sightblinder next to the augury frame.

  • Michael James Watson

A look of naked avarice crosses Dwy's face looking at Sightblinder next to her augury frame.

  • Michael James Watson

Arlo picks up the blade, shifting to Gangdis in your eyes. "So we all know its there and I'm not whatever you see under is influence."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Ah, the bane of certain magics that lack an 'off' command" Realmer says. "I wondered if you were still about or if you had wander off into shadow. Thank you for joining us, Arloxedra."

  • Michael James Watson

"Studies in the arts are important. I've seen little augury.

  • Michael James Watson

Dwy looks at Arlo shaking her head

  • Michael James Watson

Dwy"Alright. I've a Rock Paragon and my blood. North Wind? Will you?"

  • Michael James Watson

Nine steps forward and puts a drop of her blood in the frame, and lay a ring in it." Dwy nods, "Potent. you put your stair in the frame. Thanks you. Next?"

  • Michael James Watson

Ben-'You asked for blood only. What are these artifacts?"

  • Michael James Watson

Dwy looks at you, to see if you would explain or if she needs to

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer gestures to her with both hands in the 'go ahead' gesture. "By all means, since you think me not but an apprentice."

  • Michael James Watson

Dwy, "Ah.. that is true.. You learn well, padawan. Blood alone is needed. Portions of power give that might break a barrier or reveal a truth that might not be reached without them. Stones of Paragon are a potent focus. The greatest i have. My bond mother has a Shard of Paragon. If the augury shows one in a world, having the stone might show the house they are in."

  • Michael James Watson

Correction-She said "Stone of Paragon" not Rock Paragon. checked and they are different

  • Michael James Watson

Ben nods, steps up, cuts a thumb on his belt and puts a bit of blood in

  • Michael James Watson

Flora steps up, and touches the frame leaving a drop of blood. She looks about shyly, "Well, damn...." She produces a purple Mandalay Stone. Ben raises and eyebrow. "Well, Sister.... Some people think you not dangerous...How many Mandalay stones do you have?" She scowls at him. "None of your business"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer smiles at Flora and steps forward and puts his hand over the framework, a 'wound' opens on his fingertip and a drop of blood falls on the framework, then the 'wound' closes... he then pulls a large green gemstone (Ambir JoJ) out of his robes and places it in the framework.

  • Michael James Watson

Arlo steps up. Puts a drop of blood in. Scowling, mostly at himself. He withdraws a bright red stone that reeks of powers. It appears similar to the Ambir stone and Realmer thinks it likely it is a shade stone of a similar nature to his.

  • Michael James Watson

Dwy-"Lord Realmer.. I suggest as I'm working that you discuss the priorities of the things and people you seek. The Present will not strain the frame. The past will, but not dangerously. The future will strain it and my powers greatly. Have several ready. Possible one from each who donated blood. You will guide it, i shall empower it. Fair notice, this is the most potent augury frame i have ever worked. "

  • Michael James Watson

Flora, "Anything? I've not used oracles before.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer looks to Flora and says, “Yes, you may ask anything. But the answers received may be cryptic and they may also lead to more questions.” Realmer looks to the others present as he continues to explain. “The information gained could seem useless at the time or quite useful, it could help better shape a question yet to be posed, answer a question not yet posed or even change an entire line of questioning; so listen carefully and think carefully before posing your question. Also, be careful in the wording of the question as well, it may affect the answer you receive; divinations of all sorts can give ‘literal’ answers to questions posed, based on wording.” He pauses for a moment then continues. “We should keep our questions focused on those things involving Hagalta and the potential war; what is his location, what are his motives and intentions, who sides with him, who advises or influences him, what major event shaped his current life…” Realmer trails off for a second. “…anything that will aid us in understanding him, enlightening him or defeating him.” Realmer looks to be deep in thought for a moment or two, then snaps out of it and asks, “Any other suggestions or advice before we begin?” He looks around the group of Amberites involved in the Augury, making eye contact with each. “From anyone in the room?” Realmer adds quickly thinking of the lawyer and seasoned Elite also present. He glances towards Bill Roth and makes eye contact then scans the area for Gangdis.

  • Michael James Watson

Benedict, ponders, “I consider Hagalta priority one. But of equal importance are two other things. Where is Xolotl? Where is Borlak?” Flora steps away, “Ill pass and just watch. Wait... its low priority but where is Elayne?” Arlo-”Where is Woundhealer? Where is the Mindsword?” Gangdis, “Where Is my blade? It was on the horse I lost in the running Battle of Diega Raks. Its bones will have rotted away and with it many things. But my blade have been there. Someone must have found it and be using it by now.” Bill Roth steps up, “Its a very low priority, but is it true that there is a alcove in the Fane of Villa... of me?” Flora looks at Bill, “Really?” Bill shrugs, “ you all seem to have covered the big ones. And a representative of Ang Ri said there was one. Random won't let me go check” Ben chuckles, “Bill, unless we have to rain red war someplace after this ritual, I'll go look myself.” Arlo, “This is your dance, Realmer, You've heard our suggestions. You set the order and lets see how it works before entropy takes us.”

  • Michael James Watson

Dwy-"The frame will be stressed, as i said, and your suggestions so far do not seek from the future. While important questions may be the most important to gain answers for, less stressful ones might be best to start with the get the Frame working reliably."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer nods his head, "Then let us begin. Current locations of people and things sought to start." He focuses on the Frame and asks, "At this time, in what lands of what realm can Hagalta of the Odaraxta Clan be found?"

  • Michael James Watson

Dwy howls in surprise. The Frame shimmers It rises spectrally to make a milky two foot square block. The scene resolves from milky white to a bright blue sky with reddish tinges. A hot realm. Under a bright yellow/red sun. A ziggarat surrounded by masses of people chanting. On the top of the of the step pyramid is a flat surface, an alter, coated in rich liquid blood. An alter in the center is beside a standing brazier with a robust fire. Two women in gold and turquoise stand naked beside each other on one side. Hagalta and another Adask, stripped to the waist, hold a man by ankles and wrists between them. One of the woman plunges a black glass knife into the heart of the captive, ripping it out blood spurting wildly.. She raises the heart high, it glows and erupts in Green fire. Handing the heart to the other woman, she holds it high, then lowers it, biting the green fired roasts heart. Then tossing it into the brazier. The Adasks toss the body down the side of the ziggarat. Two Azcalan attendees bring a clearly drugged girl child up and place her on the alter. Hagalta, Farslayer belted on his hips, grab her wrists, the other grabs the ankles. The first woman raises her knife high then stabs toward the heart. The image fades to the cube frame of milky white. Flora pales, looks like she might be nauseous. Ben frowns, “The left priestess is Zentalas, Queen of Zictla. The other is her sister Cihalas. Nina nods, _”The other Adask is Xorax. Dwy's brother. Dwy looks up, mumbles softly..”Please... careful with the next question...The frame is strong still.

  • Michael James Watson

Gangdis whispers, "By the unicorn...." The Elite pales.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer nods to Dwy and poses the next question. "Where is Woundhealer of the Twelve Swords of Power located now?" Realmer knows it is the most pivotal sword of the set and feels it will be important to know its whereabouts.

  • Michael James Watson

The frame resolves to a green glen, an almost eleven scene of extraordinary beauty. a fine gathering of simple but extremely well made, artistic building like gazebos and pergolas dot the meadow rich in flowers. Around a small long thin fire, roasting vegetables, several skewers with marshmallows, sit a few dozen humans, a few winged fey, several types of elves. A couple dwarves, a furry looking hooka, a variety of familiar animals as well as a few great wolves. In the center sit 4 people playing instruments. A dark haired human playing a fine large harp, a elf playing a flute. A white haired young man playing a couple neck guitar, and another playing a long necked 8 string guitar. Many around them are singing. The pale haired man with the 8 string guitar has Woundhealer on his hip. He image fades away. Ben Laughs. Ben says “OK, I'm oOK with that. The leader, in the dark hair is King Adrian of Mandalay. If Woundhealer is in his company I can relax. The wolf in curly yellow is my brother Fleece. The others must be of his pack..I don't know the rest. Though in the crowd I see Nadine, daughter of Sand, and Houk, the hooka, son of Adrian and Sand.” Bill Roth looks close. “I think I may be going crazy.. If I didn't know better, id say the one with the double guitar is Jimmy Page and the one with the sword..id swear he looks like David Bowie.. They were wonderful musicians on earth.' Arlo nods, “Bowie is a Lord of Mandalay. Page is a Tosian shadow dweller who is part of CHAD” Roth looks to Arlo,”Really? David Bowie?” Arlo nods, “One of them, yes.”

  • Michael James Watson

Adrian turns, looks directly out of the frame into Realmer's eyes. Looking around the room he locks eyes with Ben, taps his forehead in salute, and waves. The frame returns milky white

  • Michael James Watson

Dwy breaths easily, takes a drink of wine..."That one was of no stress"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer looks to Dwy and says, "Then perhaps another easy one, hopefully, to help set the Framework... the next few I feel may strain it." Realmer focuses on the Frame once again and asks, "Where is the Mindsword of the Twelve Swords of Power currently located?" Realmer debated asking about Gangdis' lost sword, but was not sure how 'important' the others might feel that question is to the current situation.

  • Michael James Watson

pity

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

dang it! knew I should have gone for it. even had it typed up too. then changed it.

  • Michael James Watson

The scene resolves to a dark hellscape. Scenes of fire and ruin rest among the shadows cast by a black sun. Lava flows.. the scene turns and a giant sheet of wall of a mountain go left and right. A massively ornate door of carved stone is set in the mountain wall. Before it sleeps a giant serpent the size of a herd of elephants. Wingless, its forked tongue flutters from fanged lips. It raises its head slowly. A look of annoyance on its reptilian face.. When its head rises, below it, among thousands of magical items, lays the Skulltwister, the Sword of Madness, the Mindsword. The serpent rise its head, “You risk much Seeress, to disturb my slumber. I'll have your eyesight for it. But I will leave your mind alone till we meet in person.” The frame resolves to white again.. and Dwy shakes her head in uncertainty and pain.

  • Michael James Watson

"Hurry... The frame is now fragile.. But it remains intact"

  • Michael James Watson

Arlo-"That was the Tomb of the Ancestors of Darkness and the Serpent of Chaos..Let us hope it does not draw the Mindsword"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer knows the next question might be the last, he debates the importance of Borlak, Xolotl, or more about Hagalta... he knows he must learn more about Hagalta if he is to save his mother and prevent war. He knows he must understand why Hagalta is driven to do what he does. He debates past or future. "What one event influenced Hagalta the most and drives him to do what he does?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer holds his breath; waiting. He knows this question will strain the frame considerably but he hopes Dwy can hold it together for just one more question afterward....

  • Michael James Watson

"Two young Adask play together, children, one gray, one pale white. Their ages seem the same, not more then ten years. They play a mumbly peg knife game common among children of Montagar. They play, each a leg intertwined together, the girl watching the boy stab the knife around his fingers, her head on his shoulder.. Dworkin enters, strong and upright, appearing young. With him is an elderly but strong militant Adask.. Dworkin grabs the boy by his shoulder, pulling him up. He hands him to the older Adask. The two children hold outstretched arms together as the boy is pulled away.. A powerful but lithe Adask woman, of pale appearance comes from out frame and grabs the girl.. The two children scream and writhe, look at each, yelling each others names The girl is taken off scene by the older woman. The older Adask, carrying the screaming boy, and Dworkin, exit the door they came in. The frame turns milky.

  • Michael James Watson

Flora says "Oh... how sad...."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer sighs; he had hoped that grandfather had not been the cause, but invariably, Family seems to do more damage than enemies. He sees that the framework still holds, he knows it is fragile but must pursue matters further. "What is Hagalta's next intended goal or plan?"

  • Michael James Watson

The scene resolves to a vast plain outside an adobe stone city. Hagalta stands with his officers in fine Azcalan Armor. He has 10,000 Adask soldiers and support troops, his forces beyond the arch. They are outfitted in new bronze and gold Azcalan armor. With him are several Azcalan commanders and two clear princely types. Marching from the city is an army of nearly 100k. A mixture of various infantry types. Some cavalry. A large Cipactlix force of Lizardmen. A force of Jagri, jaguarmen, troops. Lastly a pair of wingers serpents flying, the size of large dragons. In view of the troops, the Azcalan prince hands a staff of authority to him. Hagalta marches the forces. A flickering of the frame briefly changes the image to a red sun sky over desert lands. The troops walk to a gold arch, through which is a nighttime land and a jeweled road. The army steps on the jeweled road, marching onward. The frame goes milky and shakes. Dwy fights it and stabilizes it. “Nothing dangerous, Realmer. I'm barely holding it in place.. my ears may be bleeding.. And I have my own question yet.. “

  • Michael James Watson

Ben sighs. "That figures... I'll get CHAD and a couple legions on the march"

  • Michael James Watson

Arlo-"The prince was Zictlas, that makes the city Zictala. Fanatics"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer knows that Borlak or Xolotl's locations might be quite straining as they might be protected or shielded... then will it be Elayne or Gan's lost sword? Bob's thoughts interrupt Realmer's for a moment... 'Gangdis's lost sword; this is the second time you've thought of it.' Without any further hesitation he asks "Where is Sir Gangdis of Cogswell's lost sword from the Running Battle of Diega Raks at this time?"

  • Michael James Watson

In a mountain landscape, under rain clouds a small group of wild horse crest over the hill of a small narrow vale. Each bears different branches. Some leafy, some heavy with apples. Following them down the vale into the deep woods they come to a small shaded clearing where sit a trio of horses. They rise as the others run down and join the running pack in greeting.. They all cantor to a corner of the glen. Into a covered hallow. An elderly horse, skinny but proud, sits weakly... They drop the boughs before his chest, he nods and eats.. The horse is wearing saddle and tack that show long years of weathering and many attempts to chew the invulnerable leather straps... red wounds from where the straps and leather wear on its frame and have healed scabby for many years. A sword hilt extends from below the packed gear. . it eats and lowers its head in sleep. The frame returns to milky white. Gangdis looks on excitedly. “Is this now? Is Flint alive now?” Dwy shrugs. “ It seemed free of stress, not the past or future. Id say yes, soldier”

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"I'm sure I could draw a Trump or Shadow Walk you there, once there is time" Realmer says to Gangdis. He looks to Flora then to Dwynwen and asks, "Can you hold it together for one more and then your own?"

  • Michael James Watson
  • Michael James Watson

Ben says quietly to Gangdis. " Flint? One Morgenstern's get? And the sword would be Clawripper, the one Clarissa gave you after the Bunny Free siege?" Gangdis nods excitedly.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer focuses on the Frame and asks, "Where is Elayne, daughter of Florimel of Amber, at this time?"

  • Michael James Watson

The scene resolves.. Its a large library with many worn books.. Many tables and sofas and chairs dot the wide open spaces between the racks. Reclining on a sofa, a table and tray with remnants of snacks, a young looking woman reads a large book with green leather. On its edge is the word “The Silmarillion ”. She has a half dozen paper backs strewn about her. A pair of cigarettes burn in an ashtray, a sign she forgot a burning one and lit a second she then forgot. A woman comes up and speaks to her briefly, setting a large red leather bound book on the table.. She puts two long wrapped food rolls on the tray and a trio of soda cans. The red book's spine says, “The Lord of the Rings”. The wrapped food rolls say “Subway” with no other details. The cans say “Mountain Dew” The reclining woman smiles, looks up, thanks the other who walks away. She returns to her reading. The frame goes milky white.. Dwy quickly says, 'Where is the Key to the Stair of the West?” The scene shows a crowded chamber of weapons and clothes and remnants of food. One bed is wildly unmade. A separate bed lays a pale white Adask, in what appears enchanted sleep, with a thin mithril chain about her neck, a mithril key hangs on it. The frame crackles.. fades and disperses, leaving the scent of burnt blood. Dwy looks up to Realmer. “that's Hagalta's chamber in one of the palaces n a land of the stair. I know where it is.. She is there too! She smiles excitedly, staring up at you, as her eyes go from pale blue and red to milky white. She looks around, grasping her hands, putting her fingers to her eyes... Dwy-”Oh damn....”

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"I am sorry, my sister; I didn't know our scrying would involve The Serpent of Chaos itself. I am not sure how, but I will find a way to restore your vision. You have helped all of us greatly and sacrificed much; I can only hope that your sacrifice will not be wasted." Realmer sounds remorseful and sincere in his words to Dwynwen and he looks somewhat distressed. He reaches over and takes Dwy's hand and pats it gently then places it upon her Stone of Paragon. He then takes back his green gemstone and slips it within his Robes. "Is there anything I can do for you now, Dwy?" he asks his half-sister sitting in her own private darkness... Realmer remembers a time that 'The Entity' did the same to him; took his sight for a time... he can empathize with her current predicament and hopefully can help her in some way.

  • Michael James Watson

dwy- 'The price of sight is blindness. I came here with the intent to mock you and learn enough of this stair to return in stealth. But one must take opportunities where one can. I was unable to find the Key to the West Stair under my own powers. I took the risk that varieties of blood would open me to greater knowledge and deeper visions. I was excited to find the power that this company could muster. It was the mightiest augury I've ever cast. Its wisdom is great, the danger was bound to be high. I will take your word that you will attempt to resolve my loss. To that end..I would ask a boon, of all of this company actually, I could contend with the dangers while i had my sight. I believe i am in danger, no matter where i remain in this realm. I would put myself under the protection of Amber till my sight returns, if it is possible"

  • Michael James Watson

Ben speaks quickly. "Yes. I'll take you to Amber myself. As soon as you are ready to go. Ill trump our kinsman there"

  • Michael James Watson

Flora "Ill go with you, Ben. Nina, Its been a pleasure meeting you. Tell Julian, Caine and Emilie I'll see them soon i hope.

  • Michael James Watson

Nina nods, "It was my pleasure. I am available by trump now it seems."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Benedict, thank you for offering to put Dwynwen under Amber's Care and for taking her to Amber; I'm sure she will be safer there than here in the Embassy. Flora, thank you for coming. And if I may ask a personal favor; could you look in on my sister and make sure she is doing well? Perhaps she could take my place at Seaview Gardens breakfast for awhile."

  • Michael James Watson

Arlo Sets Sightblinder down and becomes himself. Lighting a cig and leaving one hand on the blade.

  • Michael James Watson

Flora-"I'll take her under my wing. Dwy, I've known you a very short time, just this interesting experience. You seem to be coming to amber for the near future. May I make a suggestion even if it seems a strange one?"

  • Michael James Watson

Dwy, "Of course.. My elaborate plans are on hold till i can see again."

  • Michael James Watson

flora-"Well, the Queen of Amber is blind. Would you be interested in becoming a Lady in Waiting?"

  • Michael James Watson

Arlo snorts, Benedict swats the back of his head lightly, for him.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer gives Arlo a dark look and Ben a nod and slight smile.

  • Michael James Watson

Dwy-"I can honestly say the possibility never crossed my mind. Under the circumstances, i would be happy to take the time to know her, and my cousins. " Picking up her rock, she stands. She raises her hand and a pair of palm sized pseudo-dragons fly down to her hand, curling up near her neck. "I am ready"

  • Michael James Watson

Ben takes her arm, Flora opens a trump and they step through

  • Michael James Watson

Nina. "What have we learned? I'll be returning to Julian soon and should keep him apprised.

  • Michael James Watson

Arlo snickers, as he lays out his two pelican ash tray. " Well, Hagalta has performed Azcalan religious rituals. That goes poorly with his recently walking the pattern. We also learned Dworkin has been ah arse a long time"

  • Michael James Watson

(Nina, Gangdis, Arlo, Nina? anyone else?)

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

(Bill Roth; here to help Realmer research Adagalasck Law and Customs

  • Michael James Watson

Bill "Of all the things I've seen since coming to Amber, that was one of the weirdest"

  • Michael James Watson

Bill, "Lord Realmer, it occurs to me that any conversation now might be very interesting for me , but above my pay grade. If you can point out the books, i should start reading. Or i could just explore and see what i find"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

If Realmer knows where the Library with the desired books is, he will have Bob (Albino Raven form) escort him there... pretty sure Nina would have showed him and or given him access by now. "You may be right, Bill. Follow Bob and he will take you to the Library. He might even be able to show you where to start."

  • Michael James Watson

Lets just say that you let bill go look. i have a convo for you and him at some point anyway.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"And Bill, if you need anything, tell Bob. I will be with you when I can."

  • Michael James Watson

he exits stage north

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer looks to Nina, “North Wind, what I have learned is that the ‘matter’ of Hagalta has become a ‘serious problem’.... I don't mean to be presumptuous, but perhaps it is time to summon the other Winds and Stair Lords, if you have not already. They need to know what has transpired and what is about to."

  • Michael James Watson

nine frowns... "We can summon Trualta. Emilie has sword her vote to me, but when Trualta hears that, he will be very angry. Not unreasonable, but angry. He knows that if i gain his or Hagalta's wind i can reunify the lands as my mother ruled. Before the severance of the winds."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer nods his head. "Perhaps it is time then. I have also learned where my mother is and that she holds the Key to the Stair of the West. I have seen it as have we all. I'm sure I could create a Trump Sketch of the room. We should act before Hagalta returns to this realm."

  • Michael James Watson

Gangdis, "Pardon, but may i Ask a question?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Always. I value your input and insights."

  • Michael James Watson

"m' lady. I have traveled long with you, and listened to many tales.. In them you speak of "Your" wind and "Your" Stair. You often use them interchangeably. I got the same impression from Trualta . Hagalta had other things on his mind but From Dwy i got the impression. Now there are 4 winds, and far more then 4 stairs. Is the power ritual for giving you your "wind" in one of the shadows accessible to the Stair?"

  • Michael James Watson

Nina_"I'm not going to give you that information"

  • Michael James Watson

Gangdis-"So that's a yes... If we take the Key to Hagalta's stair, might you be able to find his power construct to his wind?"

  • Michael James Watson

Nina nods, "I'm sure of it, I'm not sure if its on his stair"

  • Michael James Watson

Gangdis-"So... We seize the key, you find the power construct, then we install an available Adask as the new West Wind, and see if Hagalta's head explodes?"

  • Michael James Watson

gang-"At that point, Trualta, can dig in or sign up. He seemed reasonable. I imagine he would prefer fighting Hagalta then Amber"

  • Michael James Watson

Arlo starts laughing..

  • Michael James Watson

Nina frowns...Turns to looks at Realmer

  • Michael James Watson

Nina-"If You carry the West Wind, it will be temporary. Once i reunify the winds, the powers will transfer to me."

  • Michael James Watson

"Two wielders voluntarily passing them to me will rip the third from Trualta regardless of his desire."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer cannot help but smile though he does manage to keep from laughing. He looks from Gan to Arlo then to Nina and says "Kind of difficult to argue with his logic. It doesn't sound like a bad idea and it seems you were leaning in that direction eventually anyway. But I am not sure I can as I am the Ambassador to Amber. Can I serve as both? Perhaps Xorit is a better choice."

  • Michael James Watson

Arlo-"Xorit is certainly the better choice. But he might not give it up. After the war is done, he can have his Clan since Hagalta is likely to be out of the running

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Xorit is reasonable. He once asked me for a favor, now I will do the same. I am sure he will work with us."

  • Michael James Watson

Arlo-"A favor? Hand over godlike powers and settle for a tiny fiefdom?"

  • Michael James Watson

Nina-"Maybe a large fiefdom... a Stair at least.."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"I see your point, Arlo. There is the possibility he may not give it up. But it is for Nina to decide as the Wind taking power who is named the new West Wind."

  • Michael James Watson

Gangdis-"Frankly, we may need a familiar Adask face. And arriving at the Stair, his declaring the Reunion complete might distract Hagalta's forces for long enough for us to settle the rest"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer smiles and points to Gangdis, "Another good point. I am sure Hagalta has missed the deadline for the Battle for Reunion by now...."

  • Michael James Watson

Nina_"the choice is yours, Realmer"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Then let it be Xorit. Me being an outsider and Amber's Ambassador only complicates matters."

  • Michael James Watson

Nina-"then let us make plans... Make Trumps. Lord Arloxedra, i understand you area librarian of some kind. will you be joining us? " Arlo chuckles, "I wouldn't miss it. Win or lose seeing Realmer take a thumping should be entertaining as heck."

  • Michael James Watson

one quick thing. After a couple days Roth comes to you, "OK, I've gone over the books, talked to the people, here, the ones of your embassy from amber, and a dozen other things. I have determine with out doubt what you need for the embassy above all other things"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"And that would be?" Realmer asks politely.

  • Michael James Watson

"A Chief of Staff. For god's sake, this place is like herding cats through Disneyland. I'll take the job"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer smiles and extends a hand, "You've got the job."

Lord Trualta and the East Wind

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

With Gangdis and Flint reunited and both currently rejuvenating in the Healing Tanks of Vulsar base, Realmer returns to Adagalasck with Julian. Realmer wishes very much to use his new Trump to go to his mother and rescue her from her imprisonment, but he knows other things may take precedent or the timing may be not right, but no matter the situation, he knows he must act soon if he intends to rescue her before Hagalta returns. He checks in with Nina to see if all the Stair Lords are ready to meet and discuss the Hagalta situation and the New Reunion. He will mention his desire to rescue Satura as soon as circumstance permit and he will also ask Nina if it is possible to visit the Spiral of the Four Winds as he wishes to study it and one day assay it, with her permission of course. After leaving Nina and Julian, Realmer will have Bob check his half dozen or so Remote Viewing Eyes that have been strategically and secretly placed about the Embassy; each records/recalls all it views and hears and shares it with Bob and then Bob shares it with Realmer. It’s good to know what going on when nobody knows someone else is watching. He intends to check in with Bill Roth, his new Chief of Staff, to get up to speed on the current situation and to see if there is anything he must attend to as the Ambassador of Amber. After meeting with Bill, he intends to contact King Random and fill him in on the recent events. Then he also intends to contact Benedict and tell him about Gangdis’ recent adventures… pretty sure he would like to hear about it.

  • Michael James Watson

Nina is unavailable. Her majordomo informs you that she is in Stair for the foreseeable future. As The South Wind has rendered her fealty to the North Wind, only the Horse Lord, being the East Wind and Hagalta the West Wind remain to be dealt with in reestablishing the Monarchy of the Spirals. The North has stated that dealing with the other winds is currently in your hands. She will be available if needed.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

((in previous convos, summoning/inviting Trualta was talked about. Not sure if an invite was sent and if he is already on his way to the North Stair. If not, Realmer will do so. And since it was also discussed the Xorit be named the new West Wind, he will seek him out within the Embassy to talk with him... assuming he is still present.))

  • Michael James Watson

You are informed that Xorit has left for the West to speak to the other Odaraxta in furtherance of the Reunion under him rather then Hagalta. No request has been sent to the Horse Lord though it was assumed you would manage that.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Then manage it he shall.

  • Michael James Watson

Roth has been working at assembling the staff. Most of it is extremely mundane, and he has been drawing mostly on local professionals though he has called in member of his firm not busy with other clients as well a several from the Amber diplomatic corp. Most of what he has to deal with is below the ambassadorial level. Housing staff, arranging payments. establishing dialog with regional governments in preparation for Ambassadorial contacts.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer tries not to roll his eyes at the mundanity of it all, but thanks Bill for all of his hard work.

  • Michael James Watson

Roth seems to have done this a few times he says. His Baronial Coronet was party for legal counsel but mainly for a ten year program of clearing out inefficient and corrupt embassy staff in Non-golden Circle kingdoms where the Amber bureaucracy had traditionally postedAmbasadors and administrative people to that they did not want to necessarily offend but did not trust to Golden Circle Kingdoms. Roth took offense to this process, and took it to Random, who tended to roll his eyes at the mundanity of it all. He said, "It pisses you off? Here is a Writ of Authority, go fix it. Transfer who you want, promote who you want, demote who you want, fire who you want. If they pitch a fit send them to me. Tell them there is a new Sherrif in town."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer smiles from ear to ear as Bill relates Random's words. "Well, sounds like a true opportunity; make the best of it. And it's good to know this Embassy is being initially setup based upon your new non-corrupt paradigm. Thank you, again." Realmer smiles and nods his head in respect to Bill.

  • Michael James Watson

Roth explains-' One of the major problems at the beginning of Random's reign was that Oberon had an intensely medieval bureaucracy most of which either never bothered the king or dumped everything on the king. They practically had monks and clerics running things like the friggin' Merovingeans and Byzantine Romans did. With no electricity they copied everything by hand. Didn't even use spells. One of the first things i did was transfer a huge amount of Amber's paperwork administration to a nearby previously minor Golden Circle Kingdom, Antreda, that had two things to recommend it. It had a good harbor a short distance through shadow to Amber and electricity worked there. I went out into shadow with Bleys and Caine and found places that knew of Amber and hired whole classes out of secretarial schools and government administration schools and law schools and got them to work putting Amber on a modern administrative footing. Found a few top notch office managers and jurists and started sorting things out.. Bleys and Caine spent most of the trip vetting new people magically, scaring the piss out of them and promising to make them richer then their dreams of avarice. They also bitched that Oberon oversaw Amber like a prison guard and its politics showed it"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Coming from a Shadow with many Kingdoms, I am used to 'medieval bureaucracy', but since traveling Shadow before coming to Amber, and since, I have learned there are other and better forms of ruling and governance, and I must say, your influence in Amber shows... now that I know what you have done to improve things. Thank you again, Bill. And if there is anything I can do for you, just ask."

  • Michael James Watson

"Well, there is... Two things. I don't know much magic. My 40 year old self would boggle that i am seriously asking to learn magic. If possible id like to assay a sigil Mal at Reiss. Secondly, in time, id like to assay the inscription here. It seems a suitable place to spend some time."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"I can certainly talk to Aries at Fantalin; there is a sigil Mal at Riess there... and I can speak with Nina about the Spiral of the Winds, which I am also interested in. But in the mean time, perhaps a few Cantrips to help you get your fingers nimble." Realmer smiles and teaches him a Cantrip for turning pages without touching them.

  • Michael James Watson

He knows a few cantrip. Heat, Chill, Small light, Match.. no need to continue this thread. time goes on for Roth

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

(footnote: Realmer will contact, or get word to, Aries that Lord William Roth and Lord Relmopator Barimen both wish to study and assay the Mal at Riess at Fantalin sometime in the near future)

  • Michael James Watson

Random and Ben are convos in time.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer likes the personal touch, so he decides to visit Trualta at the East Stair. Since he has been there, recently, he recalls it quite vividly and will use a Teleport Spell to get there... but first, he must have Gangdis gather.... ...... right, Gan is not here now... really getting used to the guy... Realmer goes looking for Sir Carston and Tessa; actually he goes looking for Carston at the CHAD Hall within the Embassy, but along the way he asks anyone he sees about Tessa... she should show up soon enough. He also has Bob going looking for Tessa as well... he MIGHT find her. He will also want to stop by the stables to get Graso and horses for Carston and Tessa.

  • Michael James Watson

A native staff member tells you Sir Carston, despite having chambers in the Embassy, has moved into one of the Groom's hovels in the Stables. They have not seen Lady Tesa.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer heads to the Stables to find Carston, still asking the locals along the way if the have seen Tessa, still having Bob fly about as an Albino Raven, looking for her as well.

  • Michael James Watson

Carston is sitting on the rail fence around a corral in the horse area. He is in local heavy pants, bare chested, with heavy gloves. There is a large mug in his hand a a small keg on the ground. He is yelling to stable hands in the corral in a good natured way, the natives seeming to joke with him.. A pipe and pouch hand on the rail next to him

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer approaches quietly, so as to not disturb the goings on. He says quietly to Carston, "You look like you're making yourself at home and seem to be fitting in nicely here..." looks to the keg and mug "and enjoying yourself, it appears. Hope I'm not intruding?"

  • Michael James Watson

he looks over raising his mug, "Not at all sir. you here to watch or are we going someplace?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Going someplace, but not right this moment. I haven't seen much of you since you came back with the CHAD contingent from Amber. Been busy or avoiding me?" Realmer asks with a hint of humor as he pulls out a long stemmed bone pipe and puffs on some fragrant herb... smoke issuing from the pipe with no sign of it being lit.

  • Michael James Watson

"Oh busy.. Julian asked me to keep an eye on Morganstern for him. Morg and Grasso seem to be having a competition to see which can mount and breed the most mares. They are treating the horses around here like their own personal harems. The male horses aren't even complaining. They can't seem to decide which horse to follow around like puppy dogs. The mares are pushing each other out of the way in order to be serviced. Its like a horse orgy out here. However, Julian wanted to make sure an accounting was taken of which horses bred for Morg. " He hands a clipboard with a thick stack of papers. "Its just as easy to keep track of Grasso's too. So I've got the grooms here getting info on the mares, and tracking which ones catch.. Thirsty work to be sure.. Never seen anything like it. Even as a kid on the farm the studs didn't get this frisky"

  • Michael James Watson

"To make matters more complicated, Julian has told the troops here that he will not claim any foal of Morg. Since they don't know what Morganstern is the troopers from all over this kingdom are bringing their mares and will be for the foreseeable future. .. Apparently its a tricky thing for Morganstern. He can impregnate a mare but the offspring isn't "His" its his "Horse " self... Its above my understanding but Prince Julian told me anyway. Something about a Primal Beast choosing to breed as itself or to breed as its race. Still, the mares don't know the differance and their honors don't need too.. By spring we is going to be arse deep in the clickety click of baby horse hooves"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer raises an eyebrow and says, "Should have expected something like this with Julian and Morganstern here... Julian explained to me... in great detail, the mating habits of Primal Beasts... just recently in fact. And yes, please track Graso's successful breedings as well. I am sure Lord Trualta and Julian would be interested in such couplings as well. Speaking of the Horse Lord, we will be visiting him soon, at the East Stair; I need you and Tessa with me. Have you been following the local goings on and politics here? Or is it 'above your pay grade', as my new Chief of Staff might say?"

  • Michael James Watson

"Grasso, i don't know the breeding habits of his race but he can mounts like a champion"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Well, since we will be visiting Lord Trualta, you can ask him personally."

  • Michael James Watson

"That Roth? Ys, i know his kind... Smart, and knows it.. I've been spending a lot of time with the troopers, grooms, maids, and cooks. They are excited by the embassy and think me some kind of lord. Had to really convince them otherwise to get them to trust me. They worship Princess Nina for certs.. Same with Emile.. They are not afraid of the Horse Lord though they do respect him with worry. Hagalta they hate.. They fear him ravaging the realm flat.. He is not liked. They keep asking me if you are here to kill him. Hope you don't mind, i told them we are working on it."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer grins and laughs openly. "Well, there are no direct plans for killing him at the moment, but I am sure it will end that way regardless. Nina intends to Reunite the Clans under her rule, Emilie has sworn herself to Nina, she wanted me to replace Hagalta as the West Wind, I refused, suggested Xorit instead. Now we must convince Lord Trualta to go along with all of it to bring peace and stability, and possibly more, to Adagalasck. That's the short of it. Gangdis will be away for a short while, so I really need both you and Tessa... but he will be back. I may need your help finding Tessa first, though. Bob is out looking for her now but so far without success."

  • Michael James Watson

he nods. "Yes sir. I think the grooms and I have got this breeding under control. I'll send word to Tesa. Should be an hour or so..We'll be ready"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Thank you, Carston. Also, have Graso ready as well as male horses for you and Tessa. I feel it will be important for me to show up riding Graso as he was a gift from Trualta."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer visits the Embassy's kitchen/larder and grabs a couple of bottles of Amber's finest wines (yuck) and a couple of small kegs of Amber's finest ales.

  • Michael James Watson

Graso has a look of being very pleased with himself. Tesa seems quiet and serious but ready to travel. Carston is ready too.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer floats atop Graso and suggests Carston and Tesa get in the saddle as it will make things easier. He has Bob land on his left shoulder and confers with him mentally about the arrival location for the Teleport Spell, a place outside the great Stair of the East, a place they have all been before, a place where they can be seen coming from a distance. After a few seconds of exchanging mental images of the plains outside the Stair of the East Wind, Realmer speaks and/or gestures the required Lynchpins for a Teleport Spell that opens a temporary Portal to his desired location. The three of them and their horses pass through at the same time, side by side, then the Magical Portal closes behind them.

  • Michael James Watson

The Stair is busy as it was at the time you saw it last. The difference is that the huge open square is filled with tents, shades, and troops. Horses, The smell of iron and steel being worked. Its a heavily armed place. Troops are training. There is a little surprise around the area you arrive, and you note a herald of some kind run up into the stair

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer and party move slowly towards the Stair. If addressed by anyone, Realmer will say, "I am Ambassador Relmopator of Amber, here from the Embassy at the North Stair. I request audience with Horse Lord Trualta of the Wild Grasses, Master of the East Wind and Lord of Air."

  • Michael James Watson

The herald bows, "Yes sir, the East Wind waits above. Follow me." He heads up the Stair into a a private sector. Into the the diplomatic area . In the room is a dozen military men, in arms, looking over maps and papers. Trualta across the table down the way. He looks up. Carston whispers.."There are arbelests aimed at us. Three sides... Through arrow slits on either side. " Tesa steps back several arms under her cloak."

  • Michael James Watson

Trualta walks from behind the table, as his generals stand to block the table and regard Realmer and his crew.

  • Michael James Watson

"Greetings, Ambassador. Emissary of the North Wind."

  • Michael James Watson

"Have you brought the Red Arrow? "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer had a smile upon his face as Lord Trualta approached him and looked as though he had an introduction or speech prepared, but after the East Wind asks his question, the smile fades from Realmer's face and the prepared speech is obviously forgotten for there is a moment of silence before he manages to say, sounding confused. "Umm, Red Arrow?”

  • Michael James Watson

"Ah... do you bring the Declaration of War from the North and the South Winds?

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"East Wind, I bring word that the North and South Winds support replacing the West Wind with another and Reuniting the Winds. And I bring word that Lord Hagalta leads foreign troops to Adagalasck to wage war. I have also come to ask your support in the coming change and coming war."

  • Michael James Watson

"Ambassador, you come asking me to lay my blade at the feet of and give my subservience to the North Wind despite her absence from the governance of the realm for decades. Though lovely, she is easy to distract and has a long history of letting others manage her realm until she could be bothered attend to her avocation. No, i shall not put the 4 Winds in her hands. If the two Prince of Amber wish to make this realm their fief in the service of Amber they shall do so over my dead body. There is good news in that for you. My son eagerly wishes to abandon his heritage and serve Amber. Perhaps when i am dead the Princes of Amber and their lady Winds will find useful employment for him since i seem to be unable to myself.

  • Michael James Watson

"As for the West Wind, he has seemed to have chosen a path of destruction. My army makes ready to travel to the arch and when he arrives i shall deny him passage. Tell your pretty whimsey and their Amberite suitors that the rear of my army will be lightly defended since i must use my best troops to defend Adagalasck as we of the East Wind and the Clad of the Wild Grasses have always done. I shall know their character the moment they fall upon my baggage train. Tell them that Princes of Amber they may be, but i shall make them such a fight that though i am defeated and trod upon by their steeds, they will know well that they fought a man of honor and skill. And if they attack me thus, and i am victorious, they should expect no mercy from me."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer sighs and looks a bit sad. "I am disheartened to hear that you will not support the North Wind. I had hoped that you would see it as a viable solution to strengthening Adagalasck and keeping Hagalta from claiming power. But knowing you will still defend this realm against his attacks and ambitions gives me hope. I will do all I can to persuade the other Winds and those in Amber, to not attack your forces or take your lands while the matter of Hagalta remains unsettled... though I have heard no plans to attack you from either side; only a desire to resolve this matter and assure Hagalta does not come to power. I will endeavor to have all the forces of Adagalasck work together to defeat Hagalta and his forces regardless of where they currently stand politically speaking. Once the Hagalta conflict is settled I will still endeavor for a peaceful solution to the Four Winds with all involved parties within and without Adagalasck."

  • Michael James Watson

"You have heard there is no plan to attack me. I see. Is it or is it not true, that Hagalta assayed the Pattern of Amber? That makes three of the Winds in the possession of Amberites. And You yourself are a candidate for the West Wind should Hagalta be destroyed. Do you think it wrong of me to be suspicious of three newcomers to my ancient land who so suddenly have assumed positions of authority and influence? Is it irrational of me to distrust Amber's motives?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Your information network is good; yes, Hagalta has recently assayed the Pattern of Amber without consent of King Random. And I have refused the offer to be the West Wind; an outsider and newcomer would not be accepted by the Odaraxta Clan." Realmer sighs, "Your suspicions and distrust are good signs of a thinking leader looking out for his homeland and his people; I respect and admire that in you. But to simply resist change, perhaps in honor of tradition, and not try to influence the new Regime and perhaps come to a compromise of some sort... that is irrational, to my way of thinking." Realmer takes a deep breath and continures. "Yes, I am a newcomer and yes I still have much to learn about Adagalasck and the Adask ways... and the ways of Amber too, but change is coming, not just here but everywhere in Shadow... whether anyone likes it or not. So... do you resist change or adapt to it? Me; I adapt." Realmer looks and sounds like he is done speaking, but then suddenly adds, "Oh, and for the record, this whole mess is because Hagalta is a hot-headed warmonger that marched off to Amber in a huff and falsely declared himself 'King of the Four Winds', or some such title, and demanded Golden Circle status for Adagalasck and more or less openly threatened everyone with his Magical Sword of Power. So, that is why I was named Amber's Ambassador... and because I was here, involved and oddly related. And that is why the North and South Winds reunited. And that is why a new West Wind is needed. And that is why Hagalta has sought outside forces to wage war upon this realm. His hot-headed decisions have brought this upon all of us." Realmer slowly reaches inside his Robe and pulls out his long stemmed bone pipe and takes a few puffs of his fragrant herbs, to help calm his nerves... he realizes the last part sounded a bit like a rant.

  • Michael James Watson

Trualta consider for several moments.. Turns to his general's. “Continue warrior kin the preparations. We leave within the hour.” Turning to a servant, he waves aside to a side table, the servant exits the room quickly. Stepping over to the table he motions to the other seats.. “my pardon my lack of hospitality. My feet are ready for war and they make me forget that courtesy is the lubrication of diplomacy.” A servant comes out with a pitcher of mint lemonade and glasses. He settles into a chair. Carston whispers-”The arrow slots are covered... Best I can tell.” Tesa is uncommonly quiet.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer smiles at Trualta, nods to both Carston and Tesa then takes a seat at the side table and says to the Horse Lord, "And my pardon for my lack as well; Hagalta is a hot matter for all, doubly so for me. I have brought gifts of Amber." He reaches into the large outside pockets of his Robe and pulls out two bottles of wine, one from each pocket. "Amber's finest wine, so I am told; personally, I abhor wine, but I am assured by many, including the family that makes it, that it is truly the finest Amber has to offer; a red and a white." Both have labels from House Bayle. He reaches into his pockets again, this time they distort in size as he pulls out two mini kegs of ale. "Amber's finest ales; these I do like, quite a lot in fact. One a dark the other an amber; both quite strong yet flavorful."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Bob is still on Realmer's left shoulder, but is paying attention to everything in the room except Realmer, Trualta, Carston and Tesa. He is watching and listening to all the activity and plans of the officers and troops around them.

  • Michael James Watson

Sipping his tea and removing his own pipe, that he carefully lights. “I have reason to distrust the North and South Winds that go long back in our history. They have held those roles for hundreds of years and have often been negligent in the pursuit of their duties. Decades of abuses would pass until one or the other would deign to attend to it.” “My father had an ambassador who spent 25 years in the North waiting to be greeted by the ruler of the realm, despite frequent word that she was within a few meters of him. Father and I both sent emissaries to the south only to have them returned shape-shifted into pigeons and ferrets. Spells our sorcerers could not undo. I have a cousin,who is currently a very large and surprisingly angry tortoise. I'm reasonably certain he is in procession of his intellect in his shelled forms.” “My grandfather, father, and myself have had to fight border wars with the North and South when generals or clan leaders took regions into their own hands despite their fealty, only to have one or the other emerge in orgies of violence that left contested regions ruined for years.” “I respect your loyalty to them and your kin. You say they do not intend to make war on me. Very well. I shall know their character by their actions. I shall know my allies when I see them in the line of battle beside me. “Bear in mind. I know the North and South Winds well. One is not a fit ruler of this realm. The other is a raving lunatic. That they have been reunited with ancient companions is not as joyous to us as it might be for you and them. I have grave reservations about the North and the South winds as rulers of this realm and good reasons for them. And I will not kneel to Prince Julian or Caine, nor King Random.” “If Xorit becomes ruler of the Odaraxta and the West Wind, he and I shall have a long talk about our choices. But that will not happen till Hagalta is put down. When that happens, consider carefully who is most fit to rule this realm. I would be happy to leave the Four Winds separate. I will need to be convinced if change is required. I am willing to assume the throne of the Four Winds myself and it might be in Adagalsak's and Amber's best interest if I did.” “Now... I would be willing to consider us allies at least in the matter of Hagalta if you could possibly do something for me that would be of great assistance to me and my forces.”

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"I would have to know the favor first, before I can consider granting it. And depending upon the particulars, I may have rules or conditions to go with it. But feel free to ask." Realmer enjoys the mint lemonade as he ponders Trualta's words.

  • Michael James Watson

"I am able to move a large force quickly across my realm and cross the grasses and the hills to reach the Arch in 8 days. . But i have 22,000 warriors and 15,000 support staff as well as 60,000 horse,,20,000 cattle., 3,00 oxen pulling 2000 wagons. I can not move that force in the manner of the Winds. It will take me 30 days at least to move my forces to the Arch. However, you and your kinsman have trumps and those could make my forces cross over that distance in a day."

  • Michael James Watson

you note a couple remaining generals trying to look at the map but also leaning back enough to ease drop

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer says "Hmmmmm... I would need to see the place you wish to move your troops to... either directly or through a mental image or memory... a description of the place wouldn't be quite enough.... I would also have to channel quite a bit of magical energy into the Trump Opening... to enlarge it enough to be practical for your needs... and to sustain it for the time needed..." Realmer sounds more like he is talking to himself or making a list, puffing his pipe every few words, exhaling smoke as he speaks. "It is possible... would take me two days to make the Trump ((according to ADRPG)) as long as I have a good Psychic Impression and visual of the place." He puffs on his pipe quietly for a moment or two, looking thoughtful, then says, "There is also another possibility, that is quicker, but more risky; I would still need to see the place directly or a really good Psychic Impression... but I can create a Trump Sketch in about an hour that... miiiiiight.... work."

  • Michael James Watson

Carston taps your shoulder

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer turns and looks to Carston...

  • Michael James Watson

he leans in and whispers. "Julian is your military adviser and we know the look of the Arch. We teleport to the arch, Julian here, it wouldn't be a matter creating trumps would it?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer nods and whispers back, "You make a good point. Thank you. Remind me to raise your rate of pay." "There may also be a third way... but I will need a moment." As he reaches for his Deck, he pauses and looks to Trualta. "How soon before your troops are ready to leave?"

  • Michael James Watson

"a few moments ago i ordered my troops to be ready to move in an hour. My generals won't fail me. Even the three at the table evesdropping on us."

  • Michael James Watson

the generals at the table chuckle goodnaturedly. one says. "Always a first time"

  • Michael James Watson

(Julian hasn't met Trualta? right?)

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

((no, but he wanted to after meeting Graso))

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Trualta, do you wish to have your troops arrive on this side of the Arch or the other? I have been on the outside and could Teleport us there easily, but this side I have not. I would need an image, an impression of the place. Have you been there and would you trust me to... see the image in your mind?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer was shuffling through this Trump Deck while talking to Trualta, looking for Julian's card... it doesn't take long as he has used it recently. He puts the Deck away in his Robes and holds the one of Julian in his hand but is not looking at it yet.

  • Michael James Watson

"The Arch is not locked any longer, its only a matter of time before outsiders arrive in numbers.. If a battle does not ensue it would still be wise to hold the exterior. The exterior ground would be preferable." The genrals no make no pretnece and walk up beside their lord with interest"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer nods to Trualta then focuses his attention on the card in his hand. He concentrates on the image of Julian until he makes contact.

  • Michael James Watson

Contact comes quickly...It feels guarded, as if some magical defense is present. "Yes? Ah.... Realmer! Well met! How fare thee? I was looking for you in the offices but Roth said you were out"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer responds mentally, to keep the conversation private. "Yes, I am well enough. I am at the East Stair with the Horse Lord Trualta. I need your help and I need it now, or very soon. I will need you for a full day. Can you come now?"

  • Michael James Watson

"You are with the Horse Lord! Excellent! Bring us through!"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Us?" Realmer asks and does not extend a hand... yet.

  • Michael James Watson

"Well yes, Morganstern will want to meet the Horse Lord of course.. We are on a ride... trying to burn off some of this ......passion...of his...."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"I understand." Realmer looks around the room, gets up and moves to a position where there is enough room for Julain and Morg. He looks to Trualta and his generals, "You're in for a treat." he says to them verbally and extends a hand to Julian and says verbally, "Come on through."

  • Michael James Watson

Julian grasps your hand and he and Morganstern cross the trump. Trualta and the Generals, and the servants back away and julian turns the horse and then rears, making a magnificent pose.

  • Michael James Watson

Julian slides off and looks around the room..

  • Michael James Watson

julian-"Lords, we're indoors..."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Horse Lord Trualta of the Wild Grasses, Master of the East Wind and Lord of Air, I introduce you to Prince Julian of Amber, Defender of Arden and my Military Advisor. Julain, Horse Lord Trualta." He gestures appropriately at each as he speaks.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"And Morgenstern, Primal Horse and faithful mount to Prince Julian."

  • Michael James Watson

Julian crosses to Trualta with an uncharacteristic grin, 'Lord Trualta, its my pleasure to meet you. I'd like you to consider me in your debt. I have not seen Morganstern this ...excited... in a century. That Raynahen Grasso and he have become boon companions and are wearing our the mares at the North Stair!"

  • Michael James Watson

trualta looks genuinely taken aback... "Its my pleasure. Hmmm Raynahen rarely get that....frolicsome.. " Julian does not attempt to greet the generals...

  • Michael James Watson

Julian, "So Lord realmer, why did you call? "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer fills in Julian including the numbers given by Trualta. "And they should be ready in about half of an hour."

  • Michael James Watson

He nods.. listening.. "A large force.. But doable.. Realmer, my suggestion is this. Let me and Lord Trualta manage his forces here. You go to the Arch and get Caine there. He and I have done this kind of transfer before for Benedict. Its strenuous but not difficult. We can open a solid 10x15 portal. Sir, I assume your generals can establish the camp you spoke of. When the transfer is complete Morganstern and I will come through. Its been a long time since i did battle against a relative. its be like old times"

  • Michael James Watson

Trualta seems a bit surprised. "That should work. Will Prince Caine be willing to assist in this? "

  • Michael James Watson

Julian, " King Random has declared Hagalta public enemy number one. It may be a race between Caine and I as to who gets to kill him first"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer nods to Julian, "I will Teleport to the Arch, Julian you contact Caine and fill him in now, then I will contact him and pull him through so you two can setup the Trump Gate. Trualta, I hope this shows you that Amber is willing to help, and listen. Get to know Julian, talk, share war stories and politics and horse linage until the fighting begins. I will talk to you both again soon." Realmer draws out Caine's Trump and adds it to Julian's then puts them in the inner pocket of the right sleeve of his Robe, then he gestures for Carston and Tesa to move close; when they do he casts a Special Effects Teleport racked in the Robe that leaves a puff of purple smoke when he exits, but nothing upon arrival at the destination.

Postlude: And the Music Plays On

  • A year has past and the realm of Adagalasck has settled into a state of acceptable uncertainty. Yet many things have occurred.
  • The Seat of the West Wind was vacated and the public had begun speaking in the taverns and the concert halls of an Amberite as the West Wing. But battles have occurred.
  • Princes Julian and Caine transferred the forces of the Horse Lord to the Arch. There they took possession of both sides. Trualta and Julian were often in each others presence.
  • Time passed and the situation solidified. Realmer returned to the Embassy and business began. Many factors sought him out to establish trade with Amber. Requests for travel were made but the relations did not allow it yet.
  • Nina and Julian were often together. Caine and Emile were never seen together but they were clearly seeking solitude for themselves. Caine traveled among the warriors. Training, singing, drinking, and making friends.

Then a battle occurred suddenly.

  • Hagalta arrived without warning with a massive body of Adask warriors and a strong force of Azcalans. Having little warning the battle was engaged before Julian was at all prepared beyond what had been the standard guard.
  • It was a brutal one, where forces of Trualta and Julian were hard pressed. A massive cavalry force battled a massive infantry one. In the end Trualta laid low an Azcalan Lord of the Royal line. Julian fought Hagalta in the center of the Arch.
  • In an epic battle Prince Julian and the West Wind fought at the height of their might. On foot. When three great Adask lords intervened in the duel they nearly brought the Prince to death. He fell back and holding a trump, screamed into it. Two men stepped through. Both a bit confused, drawn suddenly from other endeavors, saw the battle and stepped forward. One a tall blond man in green. His clothes shifting from blue jeans and tweed to scale armor, a long blade in his hand. The other, a man in a dark red casual business suit jacket, raised a strong nail gun and fired with the clicking of clockwork. Julian stood and stepped back into battle.
  • Hagalta battled like a great lord but faltered. The man in red, answering to Rinaldo, sank a row of 6” nail from his nail gun across Hagalta' face, causing one eye to pop free and fall to the ground where it was recovered by a soldier of Trualta's force.
  • The giant man slew around him, shoulder to shoulder with his brother, achieving a long held desire of the princes to fight beside each other in battle and balance out the time they fought each at the Gates of Dawn.

In the end Hagalta was taken from the field, near death, by Azcalan warriors. Though not without losing an eye and a blade.

  • Prince Julian raised the plain long blade, seeing it for what it was, and slid it into his belt. Thus did Prince Julian claim Farslayer.
  • Dalt and Rinaldo stood beside Julian as Trualta acclaimed him the West Wind.

It followed fast as Julian found himself ruler of a quarter of Adagalasck with the agreement of the other 3 Winds.

  • Things settled after the battle. Julian moved to the West Wind and claimed its stair. The other three Winds visited him in State and the forces of the West Wind greew to know their new ruler.

Hagalta was heard to have withdrawn to Azcala.

  • Morganstern went to run with the Rhynahn for a time.
  • Julian presented Realmer, the Ambassador to Amber, with a clear jar holding a bloody eye. He suggested it be sent to King Random so that it didn't grow a new Hagalta.
  • Caine and Emile announced that their marriage that had been consecrated in the Grove of the Unicorn eons past, despite King Oberon's objections, had finally born fruit. Princess Emile was expecting.
  • And in the Dungeons of Amber, an imprisoned prince cast a personal tarot. A son and a niece, a brother and a cousin opposed and reversed, a unicorn and a tiger. And a daughter wielding the Red Sword of Bursain. He chuckled listening to the steady drown of a wargod reading romance novels aloud to him.

Book Two: A Paragon of Chaos

Prolouge

Five years have past and the realm of Adagalasck and much has changed. To the vat surprise of the many peoples and realms in the lands under the Stairs and among the winds, and accord was reached. Prince Julian of Amber became King Julian of Adagalask, Lord of the West Stair, and his bride took the title of Princess Consort instead of Queen. It was admitted that their marriage had been sanctified in the grove of the Unicorn but for magical reasons Nina did not wish to take the throne as Queen yet. The Horse Lord Trualta was named the Ambassador Plenipotentiary to Amber from the Land. Prince Gerard and Bleys attended the Coronation of their brother in an official capacity as representatives of Amber. After the celebration the pair disappeared into the shadows of the various stairs, intent on traveling and leading lives of adventure for a time. Bill Roth established an efficient and sound Embassy for Lord Realmer and after 4 years, felt achy and tired, feeling his age he said. He left the office in the hands of a seasoned administrator and returned to Amber where it was rumored that he was sent to the Far Isles to "appreciate the situation" there. Word has come that Hagalta is in Azcala, and deeply out of favor with the God Emperor Tonacat but still enjoying his protection for a time. His eye did not heal and was replaced with a cybernetic device. In the south waters, the fishing was productive and a great battle between sharks and dolphin was fought.

Kevin's Mystery and Jurt Sawall

  • Michael James Watson

Life has gone on and the office of Ambassador to Amber, even for such a small realm as Adagalasck, is often a perplexing one. Amber officially recognized Julian as the King of Adagalasck. But had no other contact. The Lords of the Four Winds solidified and war in the realm faded as the time of a king brought great joy and unification. Business was brisk and realms across shadow contacted the Ambassador to seek trade and tourism opportunities. The Ringmaster of Alamond had requested a meeting. Kevin, the Ambassador's pet, had acted active and loudly, till it fell over in a swoon. Alive, it took a little water, but otherwise barely responded. Something was bothering it. And suddenly, a trump call comes to the Ambassador from Amber.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

The daily trials and tribulations of being Amber's Ambassador have become a bit tedious and trying on Realmer, he had been considering of late, returning to his carefree life of Adventuring... but things kept piling up and Realmer just kept plugging along... and now this Request to Meet with the Ringmaster of Alamond... perhaps this will be his last big act as Ambassador... "And what IS Kevin going on about?" Realmer thought. "Always trying to get my attention..." but this seemed different. "By the Serpent and the Unicorn! What is wrong with Kevin?" Realmer acts quickly to help his beloved pet and is very concerned when the Trump Call comes in.... "Oh, for the love of Necromancy! What now?" Realmer calms his mind and guardedly accepts the Trump Contact.

  • Michael James Watson

Looking through the trump is Carly, the king's trump secretary. She nods on seeing you. "One moment for the king." Random steps into the frame, looking at you. "OK, that's good to know. apparently the trump gate works. So.. you can come here, I can come there, or both of us can go to Calrabon for BBQ. Either way, i have a message for my brothers."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer does a proper bow when he sees Random, as he always does... even if it bothers Random; it's just how Realmer is. "Your Majesty. If you are in Amber, perhaps is best I come to you; I may have need of my laboratory there." Realmer reaches down and scoops up Kevin and holds him to his chest. "If not, then here would be second best. I'm sorry to burden you with my personal issues, but it seems my dog is not well."

  • Michael James Watson

Random nods. "Time is 3 to one there i think. I could use the time off. But Julian would probably shit if i just showed up in his corridors, don't you think?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Yes, Majesty, he just might. But Adagalasck is overdue for a Royal Visit from the King of Amber, and I couldn't think of a better place to start your unannounced visit than the Embassy and a better person to speak to first than your Ambassador." Realmer smiles, bows deeply and makes a grand sweeping gesture for the King of Amber to step through the Trump Gate into Realmer's Office at the Embassy.

  • Michael James Watson

Chuckling, Random steps in, followed by Bleys and Benedict, and Arloxedra. Random-"Yes, i was thinking the same thing. Do you think you could convince my dear sweet brother to visit his kid brother here in your quarters? No pressure of course.” Bleys smiling, Benedict straight faced, seem the opposite of 'no pressure'.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer bows his head to Bleys and Benedict... and Arlo as well, but there might have been the slightest of narrowing of Realmer's eyes when he looked at Arlo... and it is slightly possible that Arlo noticed... Benedict surely noticed. "I would be happy to get him here for you all... but if I have to use up a 'favor' with Julian to do it... then I will be owed a favor... your Majesty." Realmer quickly pulls a box of cards from his Robe and opens them and then summons the desired Trump to the top; Julian. He focuses on the card and pushes gently at first, then more persistently as needed... Realmer knows that King Julian has a habit of ignoring Trump calls when he feels like it. Realmer will use considerable Psyche, if needed, to get Julian to reply.

  • Michael James Watson

Reaching him, he seems to know who is calling, a new trick of his, "Yes? Please tell me you need me urgently so i can bow out of this council meeting'

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer tries not to smile at all as he says, "I need you urgently, Majesty. I AM sorry to interrupt your meeting. Were it not most important I would not have contacted you. If you please?" Realmer extends a hand to King Julian... then pulls him through once Julian takes his hand. While the Psychic Contact is still active, before Realmer releases Julian's hand, he says to Julian, MENTALLY; ~The King asked me to get you here quickly and I had to oblige. I don't know why he wants to see you, so no matter what happens, I hope you and I are still 'good'.~ Realmer shakes Julian's hand in a friendly way as he comes fully into the room then release his grip and focuses on King Random and crew.

  • Michael James Watson

Julian scowls on entering. "If this is an assassination I tell you I'll make it as messy as you all ever saw." Bleys chuckles, pulling a wood box of bottles from a bag of holding. "Ya,Jules, it's a hit. I brought a case of Bayles Patternfall Port to lull you into complacency. If I was going to ice you I'd do it quietly and make sure Realmer here took all the blame. By the way, Realmer, do you have some glasses handy? They need not match"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer retrieves matching glasses from his hidden bar... which is not so hidden anymore. He also pulls out several bottles of liquor, as he has no intention of drinking wine, let alone ANYTHING from the Bayle Wineries. "Ah, look; matching glasses. And some stronger spirits for those who prefer." He sets the glasses on the table near the desk and the bottles near the glasses.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer pours himself a glass of scotch and sits behind HIS desk. IF either King looks like they were moving to take that seat, he will not, otherwise...it IS his office. lol

  • Michael James Watson

leaving pouring drinks to Bleys and Realmer re don gets to the point." look, let's make this quick. I'm going on a progress. Amber to Chaos with extended stops in Avalon, Mandalay, Regor, and chaos. I'll be leading a peaceful demonstration of force to convince Borlak and Azcala to calm the hell down. You are invited to join. Bring a couple thousand friends. We may drop by a few dozen shadows I have friends in to play some cards and conquer some of their foes. I'll be stopping at Wet Wendal's to give the fink the golden circle treaty he wants. Whatcha say?

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

While Random is speaking to Julian, Realmer is checking on Kevin to see if his condition has improved. Also to see if he was faking it for attention... Kevin is a smart dog... or if there is truly something wrong, or not right, with the little poodle.

  • Michael James Watson

Julian and random walk to a corner to talk quietly. Arlo kneels down to scratch Kevin's head. Looking up he says, " that's a fairly nasty thing to do to a pet, but I suppose it's you call. Someone you didn't like any more? "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"What in the Abyss are you talking about, Arlo?" Realmer asks, but at the same time, Realmer walks the Pattern in his Mind and looks through the Pattern Lens at Kevin... and Arlo.

  • Michael James Watson

You notice some fester in the aura of kevin. You see Arlo with a tiny sigil of amber. "Your dog has a soul in torment embedded in it. Like a type of horcrux. I didn't know you trafficked in that kind of magic. who is it?

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer peers through the lens more carefully, recalling his Necromantic ways of decades past. He also extends his Psyche, very very carefully, very subtly, into Kevin, but it is not necessarily Kevin's Psyche he is looking for. "Yes, I was a Necromancer back in my early days of Magic, before Grandfather taught me Sorcery. But I never did anything like what you're describing. I usually used my Necro Arts to combat Undead creatures... as well as other menaces. But no, never, did I or would I, do such a thing to a helpless animal, let alone my own beloved pet."

  • Michael James Watson

Well catches Bleys' eye and waves him over. The three of you look it over on a magical level. Bleys nods. "Its a flash kill. Like a soul taken in torment that binds itself to something in death. Ugly magic. It looks like the binding is fraying. The soul was probably asleep till recently....the dog probably had communication with it at a very basic nonverbal level....I've seen this kind of magic in chaos..I'd suggest seeking counsel from a sorcerer at that end of things. If the spell unravels the dog will probably be fine"

  • Michael James Watson

Arlo frowns.. "Brand?"

  • Michael James Watson

Bleys" maybe. Jurt, Despil. Maybe Vek. Mandor is in Vulsar last I heard. We are going to Chaos...maybe Suhuy."

  • Michael James Watson

Benedict having moved quietly to listen says.. "You want a dark wizard there is Jeremy Fairhand with CHAD."

  • Michael James Watson

Random and Julian walk over looking a bit perplexed. Random comments, "ah...I like dogs as much as anyone but this seems a little too precious guys." Arlo, "the dog is haunted. Possessed. " Bleys explains, "it hosts some kind of spirit besides it's own. Non-controlling. I've never seen its like. ." Julian looks at Kevin, then Realmer. "Your little friend has been around Emilie and Caine. Emilie is part Adagalasck Fey. They have some effect on inhabited spirits. I'm no wizard but my understanding is that they have fought certain types of naturally Necromantic foes over the millennia. Let's ask her. If that's OK with you, cousin."

  • Michael James Watson

Though the door come Nina. casually, looking for her husband. She takes in the tableau with a quiet tight lipped look. She stares at Benedict. "Husband... you invited this creature into our realm, into our stair, and into my presence without speaking to me of it? I grant its your right to do so as the King of Adagalasck. But as a wife i should inform you that i shall have a serious headache till this heinous creature is out of my home."

  • Michael James Watson

Speaking to Benedict, "And as for you, gatekeeper, my sister and I shall cast our doom again on you if we should meet you alone together. We are no longer your prisoners. We are free fey and goddesses as you know well. Do not make me summon my aspect and raise my attribute against thee."

  • Michael James Watson

Benedict, "Nina, i did as my king, our father, demanded. That you hold weal against me is your problem. Go to the Ancestors of Darkness if you want to register a complaint. I am sure i can find someone to open the tomb and let you enter it. You can fight it out with Oberon till Entropy breaks the door down. Till then, i serve King Random and owe no service to Oberon, your father. I am no longer the Gate Keeper of Adagalasck. It was opened without my permission and without time for my intervention. It is the power of the King of Amber, the champion of Order and wearer of the Eye of the Serpent to reseal you in your tomb. Take on your aspect and raise your attribute as you wish. Remember i have an aspect to take on and an attribute of godhead as well and may employ them as easy as you. Till then.....Fuck off."

  • Michael James Watson

Julian, Random, Bleys, and Arlo all have wide eyes in shock.. Bleys mumbles," well that's a whole crap load of information i didn't have dumped on us in a couple sentences....." Kevin yips pitifully.

  • Michael James Watson

Random turns to Realmer and whispers .."Ah... now might be a good time to ah... say something diplomatic...."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Can we all please focus here! The past is the past and cannot be changed!" Realmer says angrily. "My pet is Possessed and I could really use some help and advice. I have received several suggestions about whom to consult, and your name, Queen Nina, came up; your husband, reminded me of our shared Adask Fey Ancestry and that your knowledge could help me find some answers." Realmer calms considerably then looks Nina in the eyes and asks gently and kindly, "Would you mind talking a look at my pet? Please."

  • Michael James Watson

he actually mentioned Emilie but saying it was Nina is probably the smarter thing. and at this point Julian wont contradict you. Julian says, "Yes. ah. Dear lets talk about family visiting later.. We think there is an issue with Kevin. You know how much you like the little furball"

  • Michael James Watson

Random nods, "Yes, sister, we have not met and i had no idea this intrusion would be an issue. Please accept my apologies on this matter. I wished to speak to my brother ahead of a formal matter to your court.. I would like to continue the conversation, now with you as well. However there does seem to be a magical issue with the beast. It has been in the dungeons of Amber, with Realmer for a longtime. Can you take a look?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer did recall that Julian DID mention Emilie, but he decided some diplomacy was needed to brings things under control. LOL (Plus I the player got it switched around. lol)

  • Michael James Watson

Nina walk over toward the group, stopping in front of Benedict, putting a finger on his chest. Nina, "I feel my death curse on you still. Remember you are in my house, hellhound." Leaning down by Kevin she enters a magical perception . Bleys and Arlo both raise the sign of the pattern to watch. Julian raises the Sign of Adagalasck. She puts her hand on the dog and hums softly

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer still has the Pattern Lens up and is intently watching what Nina does.

  • Michael James Watson

Nina--"There is a soul taken in torment in this dog.. There is a deep love between her and Kevin, a connection between the two before the woman's death.. I can sense she is a simple person, with the kind of powerful soul.......she is a native of the city of Amber... i can not speak to her.. but the soul remains.. she was not a warrior..... she... worked in a shop? ah..She called Kevin ...FruFru? oh... oh... It was a Puma Cultist.. This is an Azcalan sacrifice... Her heart was ripped from her chest...... her soul.....latched onto her pet... it was her last thought before death...'

  • Michael James Watson

Benedict-"the Puma Cults that were in the City before we turned CHAD loose on them." Random nods. "Yep. Well damn..... Can anything be done, sister?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer searches his mind for answers; he mentally reviews his knowledge and experiences of Necromancy, Death Magic, Azcalan Rituals and Possessing Entities. He continues to examine Kevin via the Pattern Lens as he contemplates the situation. One of his hands begins idly rummaging in one of the pockets of his Robe; a nervous gesture more than an actual searching for something. "I have a Spell that might work... but maybe not considering. The Spell will Evict an Invading Entity from the 'host' body... normally. These circumstances are different though... and considering the nature of the invading entity and why it is there... I'm not entirely sure I want to remove it if Kevin can be saved without having to do so... but I'm just thinking out loud here." Realmer's hand stops rummaging around in the Robe's pocket and the look on his face changes slightly... as though he has thought of something. He withdraws a large gemstone from his pocket that looks almost exactly like the Jewel of Judgment of Amber... only it is green instead of red. Both Nina and Arlo would recognize the Jewel as they have both seen it once before during an Augury Ceremony that the three of them were all present for. Random, Benedict and Bleys however have not seen this Jewel before, to Realmer's knowledge, but any of them may have knowledge of Realmer possessing it. Realmer concentrates on the Ambir Jewel of Judgment through the Pattern Lens for just a moment; the Jewel begins to glow. Realmer runs the Jewel around Kevin's little body, bathing the poodle in a green light... Realmer examines Kevin's Jewel illuminated body carefully through the Pattern Lens. Then, if necessary, he will focus on the Pattern within the Jewel, through the Pattern Lens, walk the Pattern within, then study Kevin once again. Lastly, Realmer will try to talk to the Entity, using his Psyche very gently to make Contact, if possible. He knows there are others here with more Powers and more powerful Psyches... but HE has a connection to Kevin the others do not, a connection that his previous owner also seemed to have... perhaps this similar bond with Kevin will allow Realmer to communicate with the Entity within.

  • Michael James Watson

Realmer feels the jewel lend its powers to him but also lets you know that it recognizes that Random is wearing the Jewel of Judgment beneath his doublet. It is cloaking its presence from all the powers of others but the Ambir jewel and it speak to each other fondly. As he examines Kevin and the entity in it you feel Nina put a hand on your shoulder, lending massive access to her powerful psyche. Briefly it staggers you how much she has given you to control. Examining the spell holding the entity in place you consider it done artlessly, as if it was done by instinct or by an amateur practitioner of sorcery. It occurs to you that it may be a bonding of some kind between Kevin and the entity that predates her death. There is something that is troublesome about the way it must have been done. As if the ripping of her heart, done magically, might have strengthen the soul somehow. Nina whispers, "There...Look at this..." Pointing in a magical illusion only you and she see with a greenish pointer. It shows exotic fringes of the spell. You can tell these are rotting, and the spell is causing Kevin pain as it disentangles. Nina-"I think you could evict the entity easily enough. But i think i can stabilize the spell, putting the entity back to sleep. Now it is probably aware to some degree. Then it would be a question of finding a suitable host... A simulacrum of some kind. " Ben says, "A ghola? Vulsar Base has extensive ghola tanks. We could grow a body clone and set the entity into it through conciseness transfer as is commonly done by such technicians. They probably have several thousand clones currently grown for normal transfers." Nina tries to ignore Ben but nods, "That... would probably serve. It is your decision, Realmer."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer glances over at Benedict and says, "Really? I guess I missed that area on my last visit to Vulsar Base... how interesting." Realmer's thoughts become quite ghoulish as he contemplates the Necromantic possibilities... Nina most certainly picks up on this as they are still in Psychic Contact. Realmer focuses back on the matter at hand and glances back to Benedict. "And I could also accomplish the same results via Magic and Necromantic knowledge, and possibly in the same amount of time as taking Kevin to Vulsar and prepping a body... maybe... so either is feasible... or maybe a combination of both..." Realmer's thoughts drift off again on the possibilities of technologically grown bodies and Necromantic Magics... again, he focuses on the matter at hand. "Something tells me not to just discard the Soul of this woman; not knowing if it will be set free or be trapped or used for some sort of Azcalan Ritual... considering how she died. And though the saying, 'Let sleeping dogs lay' might apply to this situation... I feel there is more to be learned and that removing this woman's soul from Kevin would be what is best for Kevin. Even though the Spell may be re-woven, it may unravel again and cause more damage or even death to Kevin. So let us prepare to remove the Soul and place it within a new body." Realmer stands up straight and clears his throat softly. "I would like to do this here, in Adagalasck, where I... and others, are familiar with the Magical Environment and have full access to our needed Powers." Realmer looks at Nina and Julian specifically, but also gives a nod to Bleys and Arlo. Then he looks to Benedict and says, "But your idea of using a fully matured body that was 'grown' sounds like a better idea than me Conjuring one; after all, it will save time and a 'grown' body cannot be Magically Dispelled like a Conjured one could. Benedict, how soon could you have an appropriate body delivered here? I will need a few minutes to alter my Spell from 'Evict' to 'Transfer'." Realmer looks at Nina and says, "Nina, I would be honored if you would assist me in this process... I may very well need your help." Then he looks at all the others assembled in his office and says, "And those of you who may be able to assist with Magical Energies or otherwise to help this go smoothly, I would certainly appreciate the help as well." As an afterthought, Realmer says, "Perhaps we should move this to my laboratory..." (he pronounces it: la-bor-a-tor-ee)

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

While Realmer is speaking to those assembled, he is still fiddling with the green Jewel in his left hand; again, looking like a nervous gesture. Then a carved Bone Wand (Scrimshawed Bone Staff on Running Sheet) appears in his right hand. Realmer touches the tip of the Wand to the Jewel and the Wand changes into a small dragon skeleton (about twice the size of the little dog) holding the Jewel in its ribcage like an oversized heart. Realmer places the Bone Dragon with the green Jewel 'heart' over Kevin in a protective way. Only Nina, who is still in Psychic Contact with Realmer, hears the Psychic Command he issues to his semi-sentient Bone Creation; ~Hex; hold the Jewel and protect Kevin and the Entity within from harm. Let neither harm the other and let neither die or escape. And maintain your Link with me... and allow Nina to Link as well, if she desires.~

  • Michael James Watson

Ben-"My King. Odd as it may seem this little dog and its magical issue may be a matter of national security; If Azcalan magic is involved. You and I both know we have an expert on Azcalan magic and ritual who desires to be of service to Amber. I know that person is a state secret. But...before they proceed much further, i believe their advice may be important...I request that i be allowed to summon that asset. And that asset's....ah....significant other. " As Random starts to speak Ben raises a single finger, and anyone with warfare notices it is clearly a battle sign between random and Benedict. Random, who was about to speak, stops. "It would be best to bring them here. With our host's permission." Julian and Nina meet eyes. Jules-"Yes, if you can, do so." Random chuckles.."Well, this will be hilarious. Nothing this gathering needs more then a few gallons of crazy juice added to it. I'm going to need some Tequila if there is any around. Tell him to bring some. Crazy. Make the Call." Benedict nods and opens a trump blocking the face. "Yes, its Benedict... stop talking. ... shut the fuck up. You want a card at the King's poker table for your wife and yourself then now is the chance. ....Yes... No I am not. Yes. Now.. you may....ah... the king wants some of that Tequila you make upstairs. What? No, just you and her. Come ahead when ready. " Benedict waits a moment then extends his hand into the trump. Stepping through is Jurt, and a decidedly wild looking dusky woman. She wears a tight body fitting brown leather outfit, decorated with safety pins, and thin knives. Long Latin dark hair, hangs luxuriously over her exposed left breast. Finger bones braided into a thin braid glow slightly from red runes. Looking about the room her left eye can be seen to be a type of jewel, though one naturally grown in her skull. Tattoos that shimmer like runes or embedded spells adorn her arms. Her look is exotic and blatantly erotic. She arouses sexual interest in a viewer in a way that feels magical, and somehow dangerous and desirable. She holds Jurt's hand possessively. Jurt looks around the room.."OK, i was going to make a joke but this does not seem the time. Your Majesty, at your service. I've brought 6 bottle of Thin Whip's Amber Tequila and a case of Thin Whip's mixed beers. " bowing to Random. Random, "Jurt, try not to make me regret this. I'll take one of each and you can set up at the bar over there. Lady Untara, meet, my brother Julian and my sister Nina, they rule in this place. My Nephew Arloxedra. My cousin Relmopator, and his dog Kevin. There is a question concerning some kind of possession that is in the dog and its been suggested it is of Azcalan origin. You want credit with me, look at the dog and tell us what you see." She nod, smiles, her perfect teeth seem to look feline and feral and one sparkles with a purple gem. "Dread Monarch, I shall do thy bidding to the best of my powers." Walking over to Kevin and Realmer, the others back away. Her walk seems like the padding of a puma, careful and confident, dangerous, she is clearly a hunting cat. Pressing a hand to Realmer's chest, a wicked smile on her face, "hmmmmm such a strong heart.... It beats with dark desires...I like it... If i still served my father Xozla, my mother Cihalas, and my grandparents Tonacat and Cihuacoa, i would rip it from your chest and sacrifice it to their glory... But i do not serve them any longer. I desire to serve King Random and Amber in its war to come....Perhaps there are other rituals we could perform together sometime, Necromancer." Moving to bend and pick up the animal.. Running a finger over its heart. "Such a small heart.. but... worthy.. hmmmmmm interesting.... interesting.. yes... This was done by a puma ritual.. the heart removed, the soul sent to the pyramid of Tzin Tlalocan where Tonacat rules. There it would be added to the power of the dark god of death, my grandfather....but it didn't...amazing... the spell did not send the soul...it sent the soul to this dog.. her pet.. ah delicious..... I've seen this happen before.. Usually to horses though as their riders die screaming. So what is your pleasure, dark lord? I can finish the ritual and set the soul free. It will go where it will but it will not go to Azcala. Or i can release the soul to return to its perished flesh, if it survives. Or i can release the soul to inhabit a golem of your choice."


  • Michael James Watson

Ben approaches, "Untara.. We are considering a ghola. Are you familiar with them?" She turns to Ben, starts to reach a hand, then stops, almost hissing.. "No soul here, War God of Amber. You have wisely hid it elsewhere. Gholas? yes. Grown in Axlotl tanks by the Bene Tleilax. Amber uses such creatures? " Ben-"The methodology is different but the result is the same. Clone technology. We have a clone ready for the spirit." She nods, "It will serve. Has't you cells of the original flesh, this life can be held in stasis, its spell in tact, while a ghola is grown of the original flesh. There is a lake in Azcala that combines souls and host bodies. Grandfather likes taking particular sacrificed victim's souls and embedding them in lizards and sheep and girl children for their various uses as food and bed mates. I doubt we can go there."

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt hands a drink to Bleys, "Cute, isn't she?" Bleys nods, "Yes, she suits you Thin Whip. "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

As Benedict speaks with Random and then makes a Trump call, Realmer watches and listens with growing interest. As Benedict pulls the pair through, Realmer immediately begins 'looking them over' through the Pattern Lens, since it is still active. Realmer does not bother to hide the fact that he is 'looking over' the newcomers... especially the female that appears to be glowing with powers. Realmer wants to learn all he can about them, what Powers and Spells they have active about their personages and what Items of Power or Magic they may be carrying... openly or concealed. Realmer knows Jurt by name, sight and reputation; he has personally seen him in the Library of Castle Amber talking with Arlo on at least one or more occasions. Realmer nods his head to Jurt respectfully as their eyes meet momentarily. Untara is unfamiliar to Realmer, but her Azcalan markings are certainly familiar. As is her Azcalan rhetoric and her Azcalan Lineage and Line of Power. Realmer does not bat an eye or move a muscle or seem uncomfortable, or aroused, in any way by Untara's words or actions. When Untara approaches the table to examine Kevin, Realmer sends a mental command to the Bone Dragon holding the green Jewel to move away from Kevin... it moves across the table towards Realmer under its own locomotion. As Realmer looks over Untara he thinks better of the situation and puts the Jeweled Bone Dragon on his right shoulder, away from Untara. "Lady Untara, if you did not serve the King of Amber and you tried to take my heart, you would find that this pale gaunt body is stronger than you can imagine... just like Aztalios, Warrior of the Jaguar and his Hunting Party discovered on the Jeweled Road." "As to other future Rituals... that will depend solely on your performance and results here today. As to my wishes here today; I wish the trapped soul to be transferred into a new body so that she may live out the rest of her life cut short and so that my pet can live and live without pain. As to the golem, I'm sure it can be delivered shortly..." Realmer glances over at Benedict for a visual or verbal confirmation, then continues. "... and I am to understand that you can perform the transfer without damaging my pet or the trapped soul within? I am sure I could do it myself, but since you were brought in as a specialist, and you have experience with this exact type of magic, I shall defer to your expertise. Just let me know what you need and I shall endeavor to get it for you." "Lastly, Lady Untara, though I know you are being paid for this 'favor' with another 'favor' from the King of Amber, I need to know what favor you want from me for this service. I don't wish to be in debt to you or the King for this; I want to pay with my own 'favors' for what you are doing... will do, for me and Kevin."

  • Michael James Watson

Upon examining her you note A master level imprint of the squiggle of Azcala. It writhes in her wildly. "You owe me nothing. I build a wall against horrors by service to Amber. You mention my kinsman of the jaguar. He is a rock in a river, over which water flows. He is straw that fire burns. If his life was ended Tonacat would little miss it. But I know he raged at my betrayal. My heart feels his fingers clawing at it. Every brick baked in the sun keeps them from me. Now. This...." holding Kevin, " is the craft I forge my preservation with. Mark me though. ..you will come to me one day in need and on that day, I shall expect payment in similar coin. Now...to the craft, as a priestess of Azcala...bring me the golem and I shall breath into it life." "Husband...nectar please.". Jurt smiles as he brings a bottle of tequila. Looking to Realmer with a toothy smile . "Come to my club in Amber and watch her dance. Drinks are on me. Bleys knows the way.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer bows to Untara and says, "Thank you, Lady Untara, when the time arrives, I will gladly pay with the proper coin; I am a man of my word. As for any cells of the original body... I am sure the body has long since decayed and all traces are likely gone; I did find Kevin many years ago... by Amber's Calendar that is. And as to the golem, the ghola, and its arrival here, perhaps Marshall Benedict could be of service, as it was his suggestion and I'm absolutely positive HE can procure a body from Vulsar Base more quickly and easily than I could." Realmer chuckles at the thought of it and the call King Random would surely receive. "Hmmmm..." Realmer muses aloud, "perhaps I could peer into Kevin's memories and look for the woman that called him 'FruFru' to see what she looked like and perhaps where she lived and worked."

  • Michael James Watson

Untara looks deeply into Kevin, her fiery Sigil suddenly visible the size of a dinner plate. In it dance pins of color dancing wildly and the room fills with the scent of cinnamon and burning straw. Random whispers... "Bleys?" Bleys replies, " Its a 'Wild' imprint of a master level control of the Azcala squiggle, and a practitioner of paramount sorcery....tough...double tough. ". Benedict nods. Random reaches into his doublet and withdraws the Jewel, handing it to Arlo, like he was handing a pinless grenade. It's blazing red inner light and seems to be burning hot. In Arlo's hand it grows cold and calm, pulsing slightly to Arlo's better mastery of it. Upon Realmer's perceptions comes a vision of a young blond woman in her first youth, a child of Amber. Her appearance is that of any native Amberite, features common but attractive. Thin faced, blond curly hair, like natives of Ober. Through him it seems others gain a sight of her. Ben withdraws a trump and speaks quietly. Moments later he holds a tri-corder. Casting an illusion spell, Ben brings it to life. The recorder records it and is passed through the trump. Bleys whistles, seeing Ben uses magic confirm some of his suspicions. A tense hour passes. Bleys watching through his pattern lens as does Realmer, Nina, and Arlo. Ben receives a trump contact and draws a body clothed in star fleet medical patients attire in kelly green. Resting it near Untara. She rests Kevin on the woman's breast. Kneeling she places her forehead on the tiny form and faints limply. Realmer's instinct is to move to them, but Jurt motions him to remain at a distance. Untara falls aside in sleep. The body moves an arm over Kevin, and they roll to the side, cuddling,asleep. She starts snoring loudly... Bleys stifles a chuckle. Magic forces around the three cease. Jurt nods....." Well..I gather I'm not the only one that wants several drinks. Bars open. " Bleys walks over and pours a stiff belt. Julian stands next to Random. "Thanks for dropping by, brother. " Random takes a glass, " guess I picked the wrong day to quit sniffing glue. "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer watches Untara and Kevin intently through the Pattern Lens, watching the Power surge and flow, looking what she is doing and how she is doing it. Realmer is quite curious and always looking to learn new things... especially where Power is concerned. When Random pulls out THE Jewel of Judgment and hands it to Arlo, Realmer notices this out of the corner of his eye... and also notices out of the corner of his other eye that his Jewel is beginning to pulse as well. Realmer turns slightly away from Untara, to further hide the Jewel from her view, then he reaches up and draws the Jewel from the Bone Dragon's chest with his left hand, the Bone Dragon shifts back to a Bone Wand and drops into his right hand. Realmer places his left hand, still holding the green Jewel and places it in a pocket of his Robe... but does not remove his hand; the Jewel is still being held. His right hand remains visible, holding the Bone Wand. Realmer resumes watching Untara and the display of Power. When Realmer has a 'vision' of the woman, he immediately thinks about sharing what he is seeing with the others in the room... and somehow... he does... but he is not exactly sure how... perhaps the immense Psyches' of each person present being so focused in one place, perhaps the immense amount of Power being used in the room, perhaps none of this... But when Benedict creates an Illusion of the woman (never knew Benedict knew Magic... hmmm) Realmer knew that what he was seeing, everyone was seeing. As they wait for the ghola to arrive, Realmer continues to study what exactly Untara is doing. When the body arrives Realmer immediately looks it over to make sure the physical appearance is right; it appeared to be exactly what he saw in his mind. His heart began to race as his adrenaline increases due to his excitement and trepidation. As Untara's body slumps onto Kevin and the female body, Realmer does begin to move towards them, but Jurt's cautionary gesture stops him in his tracks. When the female breaths, moves, and then snores while cuddling Kevin, and the Magical Forces cease... Realmer finally lets out a sigh of relief, but unlike the others in the room, he does not drop his Powers or remove his attention from the three of them. As the others begin chatting and pouring drinks, Realmer take a final deep look through the Pattern Lens into the three laying in a sleeping pile on the floor of the Ambassador's Office. Realmer wants to make sure all three are well and that all three are who and what they are supposed to be... well mostly Kevin and the woman. Not that he is uncaring about Untara, quite the opposite, he is just not sure what 'normal' should be for someone Empowered as she is. But he does at least look her over again, now that her defenses are down... but he does not attack or probe... only observe. Once Realmer is sure all is well, or as well as can be, he will move his Pattern Lens back to his wrist where it remains active, holding spells and ready for use if needed. “Thank you everyone for all the help; it is greatly appreciated and means more to me than mere words can express.” Realmer says to all assembled. Then he addresses some individually as he moves about his spacious office; starting with Arlo. “Arloxedra, thank you for your quick diagnosis of Kevin's condition; without it he may have suffered further and we may not have achieved the same end result that we did. Again, thank you. Sincerely.” Realmer even extends his hand to shake Arlo's. Realmer will not be offended if Arlo does not accept his hand. To Benedict: “Thank you for the information about the ghola and the access to one, cousin. I must admit; I find everyone's more accepting views of this new 'technological necromancy' versus the less accepting view of magical necromancy, quite interesting... and perhaps a bit hypocritical... but at least Necromancy is finally being viewed as the asset it can be.” To Jurt: “And yes, drinks, good idea. I would love to try some of this Infamous Tequila. Untara is quite unique, and quite powerful. I look forward to getting to know her better. And you as well, Jurt. Or do you prefer Thin Whip? Though we have met in passing and spoken briefly, we have never had the chance to talk; I would relish the opportunity.”

  • Michael James Watson

Looking upon Untara with magic eyes while holding the jewel of Amber these imprints seen; Master Imprint of the Squiggle of Azcala-wild, Tower of Mictala, Broken Pattern, Woven Logrus Imprint, Minor Attunement to Chanticleer's Gaff, Attunement the Yellow Jewel of Azcala, Abyssal Carbuncle Attunement, Basic Imprint Sigil of Etapaq. They seem to war with each other for power within the body and mind of the Ex-high Priestess of Azcala

  • Michael James Watson

Realmer feels Nina and Bleys both silently but certainly magically exclaim, Nina in interest, Bleys in shock, at the many attunements of this State Secret being exposed.

  • Michael James Watson

Kevin seems unharmed and magically null as before, the cancer in him gone. A sense of contentment in him. The Girl is in a magically fragile state, with many forces settling in place but seems otherwise in no danger. She seems lusty and pinking up as the new soul inhabits her. Something about the meat bothers you but unfamiliar with the tech Ben used you can't quite put your finger on it

  • Michael James Watson

Arlo hesitates, knowing you both are not really on great terms. Then out of the general sense of things shakes hand quickly, "I'm glad it worked out.. a curious thing. We will have to examine them both.. Azcalan magic and all. oh... and id like to chat with you about that stone you slipped away.' he nods and moves over to use slight of hands to give Random the jewel of judgment.

  • Michael James Watson

Ben nods, "I would not call ghola technology or regeneration technology or clone medical tech to be Necromancy. Star fleet embraces a great many technologies from across shadow. And after Patternfall the greater access to shadows, and Random's insistence on modernizing things, made using things more common. Vulsar Base is meant as an emergency medical for our family. We use what ever we can. " Taking a glass from Jurt, he stays with you and Ben as Ben finishes, "But let us be clear, cousin. If i thought you performed Necromancy of a High Order, as my brother Hinarik practices, you would never have entered Castle Amber. And if you chose to seek him out and apprentice to him, you life will be measured in minutes. Brand is not the only Amberite able to wear the black scarf." He turns and walks off. Jurt nods, sips, "He once asked me if i had a preferred form of execution when my time came? I said strangulation after sexual exhaustion from Flora. saw He not amused. Flora chuckled. I think he threatens everyone eventually. Galvar is worse."

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt refills his drink and passes one to you."yes. We had mated and married, while drunk, before i had any idea how batshit crazy and psychotically powerful she was. But i grew up in Chaos following the Patternfall war, have assayed the Logrus, and have dove into the Abyss for rocks and attunements. So crazy is relative. Should you wish to have a tumble with her it won't bother me. Its sort of allowed between us. " Sipping, he goes on. "Thin Whip was an alias i assumed in shadow after a series of failed assassinations on my brother Merlin and a falling out with my mother. Life is too short to hold grudges. Once Despil came to Amber as the Ambassador to Amber from Chaos i decided to take a look at Amber. This was in the 20s of Random's reign. I found a lack of nightlife in that dull place. So I started a rave. A mobile one, taking over abandoned buildings. Eventually Random and I came to a accommodation. I arrange poker games for him and he sold me the industrial space in the tannery district to build a really dangerous place for Amberites to cut loose... Are you... familiar with the aging Effect in Amber?'

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"I am familiar with your establishment, I have passed by it many times in my nocturnal travels about the City before I came to Adagalasck. Though I never entered, didn't seem the type of place I would be interested in... back in those days. But much has changed since my coming to Adagalasck." Realmer takes a couple of large sips of the tequila then says, "And yes, I am familiar with the Aging Effect in Amber; I have witnessed it personally with my Elite Guard, Sir Gangdis of Cogswell. Why do you ask?"

  • Michael James Watson

he nods, "Gangdis.. Yes. He is legendary, even for us out of the inner circle. He is a member of many a posse of the princes. Random's mandate to me is that Amber often loses people, over the years, to aging because it tends toward dullness. At least under Oberon i hear. Dull as dull hell levels. Formal dances rather then wild parties. The occasional assignation under the branches of trees and few wild drunken orgies.. Anger that festers for centuries, souring both foemen and few deadly duels. so.....i encourage a certain amount of dark appeal and danger. But a lot of it is just set dressings. My bouncers look like shadow dwelling toughs and biker raiders, but many are amber security and Elites in disguise. I work the system... So frail old accountants and elderly beloved nannies& house keepers come, have a few drinks, get in knife fights and find themselves booze driven oiled orgies.. and they grow young. My service to the crown"  · 48w

  • Michael James Watson

"You have sort of a sinister dark appeal. But your credentials are impeccable. If you are interested I would love to invite you to the place. Play some pool, throw a few punches, cast a few sinister spells. Be part of the atmosphere. We can talk, maybe teach each other a few things, and you can watch Untara dance. Win, Win, Win."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Sounds like an interesting place you run there, Jurt. And it sounds like Random's mandate to you regarding the Amber general public, is identical to the mandate given me by Benedict in regards to Gangdis. Hmmm. Well, I will certainly visit the next time I am in Amber. And I would be happy to add to your club's ambiance with my sinister personage. And I might even stir up some trouble, now that I know that is what your club is about. And as far as teaching each other a few things..." he pauses and looks Jurt over again, then continues, "I'm sure we could both learn several useful things from the other... considering our respective lives. Yes, I will certainly be stopping by... maybe even before my next need to visit Amber." Realmer raises his glass to Jurt and toasts him silently then finishes the contents and looks for a refill.

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt refills it quickly.. "Since we are here, mind if i ask you something? not a favor, exactly..."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer takes the refill and says, "Sure. Ask anything you like."

  • Michael James Watson

"I've heard a rumor that you have a Beholder as a familiar? I've dealt with them in a few dozen realms, they are fairly common out Chaos way. But they tend to be....contrary. If you have a source for them, id be interested in visiting. Maybe making a deal. A source on the Amber side of the universe. The ones in the midrealms all tend to be devotes of Mandalay. The ones near Regor violently psionic.. The ones in the York shadows serve Borax and i don't need pseudo-chaosian beholders addicted to a creature even Chaosians find annoyingly chaotic. I need orderly, cooperative ones..."

  • Michael James Watson

"I have magical spy eyes aplenty in my place but people learned how to dark them. But... beholders would add the kind of look i like, and could give me a view if i need it and a recording when i want it. I'm willing to trade for the info and I'll make a good deal for them at the source. Pets, possessions, or hirelings.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Well, it's no secret that my Familiar is a Beholder, but I usually have him take the form of a white raven when in more... proper company. But around the Embassy here, everyone has gotten so used to see him that he mostly goes unnoticed by everyone... just like he went unnoticed by you and everyone else in the room." Bob the Beholder is always with Realmer unless Realmer sends him on an errand. Bob has been in the office the whole time, but has been using his shape shifting to blend in and go unnoticed... he usually hides in corners, cubbies, niches and near the ceiling... he also uses his Psychic Neutral to help him go unnoticed in other ways. Realmer gives Bob a mental command to show himself. Realmer also takes a moment to look over the sleeping forms and looks to each of the others in the room to see if they are trying to get his attention. He is not trying to disrespect or ditch Jurt, he just wants to make sure he is not neglecting his official duties. [Just because...] When Bob reveals himself, he looked like a section of books on a shelf behind Jurt. He floats out and floats over to hover over Realmer's right shoulder. Realmer waits until Jurt looks back into Realmer's eyes, then says, "As to a source... you're looking at him."

  • Michael James Watson

"Oh.. I noticed him. I wasn't sure what your relationship with him was. If he was a free agent he might have spoke up if a deal was in the making. Since he is a familiar, as i assumed, i spoke to you."

  • Michael James Watson

"How was he acquired? Is he a breeding beholder? Can I make a deal with him separately?"

  • Michael James Watson

"I tried Mind Flayers but the bitches got uppity and attacked me. It was a hell of a mess to clean up."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Well, I don't want to give away too many of my personal trade secrets, but..." he says quietly as he leans in just a little bit, knowing it won't matter anyway considering those present in the room. Then he continues, "He is my creation and as of this moment he is unique. I suppose he is capable of breeding. And no, he is not at liberty to deal with you on his own. You will deal with me. I'm confident I could create something to your liking, and your specifications."

  • Michael James Watson

Nodding, "OK... The purpler the better. Make a plan, cost it out, give me a price. I can pay in a wide variety of coin. Is there something in particular you want, so i can start making plans to trade?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Well, before we start talking price and method of payment... perhaps we should talk about what, exactly you are looking for. Bob here is customized for my needs, I'm not sure you would need all the qualities and powers in your beholders that Bob possesses... or maybe you would. And it IS important for you to know, for the Beholders to be... orderly and cooperative as well as powerful enough to be an actual asset in Amber... they will need to be Conjured from... well, your blood would be best.. so they bond to you and you alone." Realmer pauses to gauge Jurt's reaction and take a sip of the fine tequila.

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt has the points to pay for them once i point them out, but they will be created along those lines initially.

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt, "something the size of a small ball, visual, able to sense things. Communicate to me and my staff. Record what they see. shift shape some. hard to kill, hard to fudge. Loyal. Fecund. Possibly some part or trip of pattern magic on some level."

  • Michael James Watson

"Clearly i could conjure them myself if that's all there is to them. But i want them to function especially well in Amber and my powers are not focused in those areas. I've walked the pattern. But my powers are Chaosian. Chaosian things reek to practitioners of the arts this far east. Its why the things i do use are so easy to fudge. But if they are conjured, say, near the pattern, on some forging stone in the dungeon, using that stone you have, blood and cells of numerous Amberites...Well, the powers start to stack towards usefulness at this end of things.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Hmmm... all sounds reasonable and possible. We will certainly need to work out some more details... and I will need you present at some point during the creation process... and I will need your blood... and maybe a bit of my blood may be needed as well for them to function as you require. And by the way, I could have not mentioned the blood thing and just Conjured them with my blood, making them truly loyal and truly bonded to me. I could have told them to obey you. I could have had access to them and used them like a mini army if I wanted or needed. I just wanted to let you know I didn't." Realmer smiles and takes another sip of tequila then continues. "But first, I will need to allot the time to do it all. And considering my duties as an Ambassador to Amber... hmmm. Jurt, if you would excuse me for a few minutes. I should be back. If not, I know your Trump is in the King's Deck, I will be in touch." Realmer bows to Jurt then moves in the direction of King Random... and with any luck, Julian and Nina will be with him or close enough to overhear the conversation.

  • Michael James Watson

Julian and Random are speaking together. Arlo and Nina are speaking nearby. Ben and Bleys is kneeling by Untara and Kevin and the woman. Jurt walks over to Ben and Bleys.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer approaches the Kings and waits until he catches their attention, then speaks. "Your Majesties. If I may have a moment of both your times. I would like to announce and discuss my retirement from service to the crown, both crowns, officially. There are some things I have been wanting to do and it would be best if I was not officially representing Amber or Adagalasck when I do them. So, with both of your permission, I would like to hand over my Ambassadorship to another of your respective choosing."

  • Michael James Watson

Random looks at Julian, Julian looks at Random, they both turn to you and laugh.

  • Michael James Watson

Random-"Do you realize that you are saying that to a prince who told me he was resigning after he had left Amber and that i could essentially piss off, and he took my spymaster with him? Alright. Roth can take the job, he set up an effective enough office for you. I suppose the need for you to be here has run its course. Where do things stand with your mother?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Are you both laughing at my request? Or was it the way I delivered it? Or perhaps you thought I was joking."

  • Michael James Watson

Julian speaks to Random in a language you are unfamiliar with. It goes back and forth. Eventually Random nods. Random smiles, "It took us by surprise. And you should know it never occurred to me that you might make any kind of joke. You are young. Certainly. Take a break for a time. But remember what Oberon said; " Death is no reprieve from duty." "I was wondering what the resolution with your mother is though. Hagalta is in Azcala, i assume you recovered her? I have two sisters of yours, one of whom is also a niece of yours too are both in Amber. One is a lady in waiting for Vielle and the other is, well, hanging with Flora sort of like a pale lily, afraid to leave the Sea view Gardens. Julian has a brother of yours and your stepmother wandering around Adagalasck someplace, maybe.. I suppose I can spare you for a time. However...I will need you soon. Ill be leading an army across shadow down the jeweled road and i had it in mind to have you travel with some of the CHAD people beating the bushes. Keep your trump handy. Consider yourself relieved from duty here. You might want to take your new lady to Vulsar to oversee her recovery before you go wandering too far."

  • Michael James Watson

Ben approaches, Nina beside him-"Random, Realmer, Nina and I have spoken and we both think your dog and her woman should go to Vulsar. Vance has a pattern there now and it should give us the juice to examine what happened to her. I would like to take Untara as well, and it would please me Random, if you could find some way for me to avoid taking Jurt there at this time."

  • Michael James Watson

Random nod, "Well, Ben. You could just tell him no. " Nina- "Its is likely Untara would want him along unless you had some other thing to keep him busy. "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Jurt and I were discussing a business deal..." Realmer says quietly, "perhaps I could keep him distracted while you all take your looks through your techno-glasses..." Realmer pauses to see if anyone gets then joke, then moves on regardless. "I am sure they will be well cared for and be returned unmolested."

  • Michael James Watson

Ran nods."Yes, they have been inseparable..I understand your concern, Ben. A Chaosian and a dangerous one at that at Vulsara this early in the reign of King Vance...They certainly already know he raped the Abyss and stole a pattern. Realmer, not to intrude on your vacation, but how about you chaperon Jurt at Vulsar? You don't know any of the places i wouldn't want him to see so its perfect. plenty of room there for deal making and a reasonable amount of magical muscle too. And you can be close as they unravel the Kevin Issue."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"I'd be happy to, Majesty. And thank you for knowing I would want to keep tabs on Kevin, and the others. I will keep us both out of mischief while there."

  • Michael James Watson

Bleys approaches, "Well this looks like a council. Catch me up" Random tells him the details of the conversation. He puts his hand on your shoulder as Julian and Ran are joined in laughter by Bleys. Bleys,"OK, before you go too far, there is something you should know about that woman, Untara. Her magi was certainly potent but it wasn't strictly speaking Sorcery. I couldn't place it then i realized it. The Azcalan sorcery she used was extremely similar to Tosian Clericalism. She is a priestess after all. She was channeling Clerical Sorcery. That tells me something horrible about Azcala. Anytime magic like that is used, Tonacat will know it. What we did here today, he almost certainly watched"

  • Michael James Watson

Ben looks interested, "The sorcery wasn't channeling through the Sigil?" Bleys, "Yes, but through Tonacat too. And the ritual of the heart taking, rending soul, that wreaks of clerical magic as well. " Ben, "do you think you can figure how to do that in Amber?" Bleys, "Sure. Make Random a god. Tonacat did it to himself. Its like the Tosian World Stone. Talk to Harriet or Jeremy or someone like that for details. Fortunadas might be more social about it. "

  • Michael James Watson

ran-"I have enough trouble with the Church of the Unicorn just by being king. If the Azcalans can use Tosaian Clerical how come they get slaughtered every time we hit them on the Jeweled Road? " Stepping up a groggy looking Untara says, "Dread king, its because they are sanctified warriors. Death is a privileged for them, a consummate service to the realm. Wounds may be tended naturally, even by potion or salve, but the power of Tonacat is not used to heal. It denies the godhead....But our prayers are put on our warriors by our priests before they leave the realm that in their deaths their soul may serve Tonacat. It works both ways though. Warriors are so sure they are in the glory of Tonacat that often they fight bezzerk and fail in their own defenses, leading to their deaths." Ran-"I see. well, that's not psychotic at all....Lady Untara, are you recovered?" Uni-"I have heard you all speak among yourselves..Call me Uni..." Ben nods, "Uni, we would like to take you to a place where we can study the the spell involved and how it was used. Will you go there?" Un laughs, "Do I have a choice, Dead Ben? I told the king i would serve. Lead me"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer listens and follows along, though he is curious to know more about how Clerical Magic works, especially High Order Clerical Magics, he has already promised to keep Jurt occupied... and he does have an unfinished business deal to conclude. Realmer looks to Untara and when he catches her eye he bows to her deeply and says, “Lady Untara... Uni, my deepest thanks and greatest appreciation for what you have done for me, my dog Kevin and the woman whose life was ended too soon. If there is anything I can do for you, please ask.” Realmer turns to King Random and the rest and says, “Though I have spent many decades in High Magic Shadows where Clerical Magics abounded, and I am quite familiar with the effects of those Magics, personally in several cases, I never took the time to study them enough to be of much practical use in the next phase of this investigation. So, if you will all excuse me, I have some business to conduct.” Realmer makes a general bow to all then turns and makes his way over to Jurt, who is presumably with Arlo and the sleeping woman and poodle. “Arlo” Realmer begins, “Jurt and I were pervioiusly discussing a business arrangement and I was hoping you could give us some time to finish our haggling. Also, I am sure King Random is about to summon you over as it seems we are all on our way to Vulsar Base very shortly.” Realmer speaks to Arlo pleasantly and with respectful and sincere tones; he even smiles pleasantly. Realmer wants to put any bad blood between them in the past.

  • Michael James Watson

Arlo nods, "Yes, this is an interesting case.. and it says much abut Azcala. There is something about this body that bothers me but I'm not sure what. She looks normal enough. They used New You facial systems to customize her face along the lines of the illusion you provided. still.... curious. I'll attend the king." Standing with a nod, he walks over to Random.

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt watches Arlo, "there goes the once and future prince of Amber, if you believe Chaosian Oracles. If that happens, trump me. I'll give you asylum in Jurtway. "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

“Well, according to Amber's History, Arloxedra was the Crown Prince at one point, and if things had turned out differently, he might have become King. And to be honest, I don't think the issues between Arlo and I are bad enough that I would have to fear his Rule. But thank you for the offer, none the less, and I may take you up on that offer for other reasons one day... though maybe not because I need asylum.”

  • Michael James Watson

"Ya, there are augeries that claim Eric isn't dead but was captured on the slopes of Kolvir and remains a prisoner in Chaos. You know, Eric's is one of the few Amber cults still legal. Arlo's too. His cult following is really bizarre. Loud readers....."

  • Michael James Watson

"So... let me guess? Random wants Untara to go to Vulsar and you think you can get me to go look over some beholder factory floor while they wriggle around in her brain? I should get back to the club anyway. Why don't you come along. You'll keep me out of trouble. I need to speak to Despil anyway. Uni will want me to come with her but if i just step away she will forget she wanted me to come. They will have a handful with her. she tends to get .....destructive....if not properly managed. they need to see how she behaves when i don't keep her focused. I'm sure Vance can clean up the mess. "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

“Yes, quite perceptive of you. Yes, I am supposed to keep you company and keep you occupied while we are at Vulsar Base, so they can investigate the Spell and Magic involved in what started out as a small matter. To be honest, I think Random wants to get both of us out of his hair so that neither of us can interrupt or hinder the investigation due to our direct involvement and certain feelings of attachment to those involved. So I volunteered to keep you company and otherwise occupied; after all, we do have unfinished business. And I am certain we will be kept informed of all that transpires... and from multiple sources, I'm also certain. So yes, I will gladly accompany you to your club so we can talk in private. Do you have a Trump or Teleport Spell hung? Or would you like me to do the honors? I could at least get us outside the front doors.”

  • Michael James Watson

"I have it. Just a sec." Walking to Untara and the crew, his whispers in her ear. She turns.."Oh? Do you think this Vance is fertile? I'll shift shape to be ready. Have fun, demon. don't let that Adask sway you to high ideals. you know his kind don't have permanent forms and you shape change too easily already. It takes too much to deprogram you afterwards" Jurt walks over, a slight smile and and innocent look in his eye. "Mind making a stop? I'm overdue for a pitstop. We can get to Amber quickly from there. I've no further goodbyes to make. Ready?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"I don't mind at all. Where ever you need to go, lead on" Realmer says to Jurt. Then to Random, "Majesty, I will be checking in later."

  • Michael James Watson

Ran nods and returns to his business with Julian, Ben, Arlo and Untara. As you turn to go Nina , rest a hand on your shoulder, grasping your hands between hers. "My friend, though you go far, this is always your home. I can not tell you how much i appreciate your help over the last few years. I would still be a wispy ghost if it were not for Julian... Come back soon." Stepping a way before you an remark, she leaves a small pouch in your hands.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer gladly takes Nina's hand and then uses sleight of hand to Palm the small pouch into a hidden Pocket within the sleeve of his robe.

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt nods, turns, starts trumping away, bringing you in tow. The passage seems like a regular trump passage except there is a sensation of speed unusual to stepping through a gate trump.

Jurt, The Fount and Jasra

  • Michael James Watson

Moments later you arrive in an ornately tile courtyard of a heavily secure looking castle. Troops walk in uniform of several colors. Parapet line the roofs and towers top each corner. the color scheme is red and sandy but other colors are common in the ornate mosaics.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.
Upon arrival Realmer takes stock of the situation and has several Spells at the tip of his mind, ready to be loose if this turns out to be an ambush.
  • Michael James Watson

A functionary walks toward you both. Jurt waves him away, "I know where i am going. Go tell your liege i await them within. Don't tarry or you'll sleep the night in the sewers" "Lord, you know you must be announced.. Many people need to be informed of your presence!" Jurt stops, waving his hand the man flies up in the air, spinning in quick circles in place. Swirling quickly he starts screaming in terror. "Then by all means Drixtra, inform them... I'm sure they can here you from there."

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt waves ahead to a passageway." Its just through here"

  • Michael James Watson

Walking into a closer courtyard, the tiles are fine and exquisitely detailed. Guards come to alert instantly, but clearly recognize Jurt. He walks to the center where a fountain spurts up sprays of magical energy in red and golds and greens and blues, falling into the font. "I need a little cleaning and this is the best place for me to do it. Do you recognize it?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer follows Jurt then stares in wonder. When he responds to Jurt he does not remove his eyes from the Fount. "Yes, from descriptions and drawings in a tome in the Library of Amber, but never have I seen it with my own eyes. The Fount of Power at the Keep of the Four Worlds." There is wonder and excitement in Realmer's tone and demeanor. "May I examine it more carefully?" Realmer asks as he 'draws the pattern' before his eyes then points to the Fount. "I promise not to touch or look too deeply." Even though Realmer does have the Advanced Pattern semi-active, holding his Hung Spells, it is not fully active or being used as a Lens, currently.

  • Michael James Watson

"Jump in if you like. Never know what will happen, unprepared and all. But i'm the last person to want to harsh your buzz. I'll just be a minute. " He hops up and bathes in the glowing magical font. running it over his body, sitting down to float cross-legged in it

  • Michael James Watson

A woman come walking in, dressed in high renaissance attire of red and gold. She looks at you, raises an eye brow. "Him i know" pointing a rude third finger at Jurt. "You... Lord Relmopator, son of Hagalta and Satura, son of Dworkin...I've seen your graphic novel.. and your trump of course. I'm Queen Jasra of Kashra,"Extending her hand.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer bows at her self introduction, knowing who she was already, also from a Trump image, most likely. While still bowed, Realmer takes her hand gently and goes to kiss her hand, discreetly as possible takes a whiff to make sure there is no poison present, then kisses her hand before letting go and returning to upright position. "Majesty. It is a great an unexpected pleasure to meet you, Queen Jasra. And you have named me and my lineage exactly, but the 'graphic novel' I was totally unaware of; I must seek it out and read it one day. Thank you for informing me of its existence. And thank you for allowing me to see this place, unexpected and uninvited as I am." He bows again.

  • Michael James Watson

She laughs as a page brings out a few glasses and a pitcher in red glass. Pouring you smell heavy cinnamon. Handing one to you "I don't suppose you can do anything about my spinning Herald? I have a pact not to act against Jurt. or his magics."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"I'm sure I could do 'something', Majesty, but I'm not sure he and I have that kind of friendship... 'relationship' yet, to be honest we've only just met and only know each other by reputation; I wouldn't want to overstep my bounds. But I might be able to do something for his vertigo and nausea." He says as he looks up at the spinning fellow then looks to Jasra and smiles to convey he is making a joke. He still wonders why Random would think him humorless or incapable of making a joke... (player laughing hysterically while typing).

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Your son has granted me Access, to some degree, to the Fount. Seeing you here, I wonder if he had the authority to extend such access. I would like to see how it works, at least. And if possible, refresh and charge my Hung Spells and perhaps refresh myself? I have no intention of 'bathing' in it... just channeling off what I need. Again, with your permission, of course, Queen Jasra."

  • Michael James Watson

She nods.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

First, Realmer brings up the pattern Lens, to take a better look at how the fount of power works. Then once he has deciphered this he will channel the necessary energy, carefully, to himself, his artifacts and creature in order to refresh and recharge his hung spells and himself as he said he would. And nothing else.

  • Michael James Watson

"The page will get you quarters. Jurt will be restive once he gets out. He has permission to bring people here, even train them to access it. Its part of my deal to be able to call on him for help. I do not have a good history with Amber, as you might guess...so.. i take what i can."

  • Michael James Watson

"If you can release my Herald I'd appreciate it. He is throwing up on the guards"

  • Michael James Watson

"Feel free to work your magics here. See the shelves up on the walls? Each is about 10 by 8. Sit on one and work from there. If you cant get there on your own.. well, weak magic"

  • Michael James Watson

She turns and walks oof, stopping and looking back.."Tell Mr Wonderful dinner is at 6. at 7 I'm sending a plate of anchovies to his room"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Hey Jurt!" Realmer calls out in a friendly voice, "Your mother asked if I could do something about her Herald... would you mind it I..." Realmer gestures towards the floating, spinning, hurling herald but does not finish the sentence leaving the request somewhat unsaid.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

While Realmer was looking at the Fount through the Pattern Lens, he could not but help look at Jurt, and the Powers about him. Since he was more focused on Untara when the two entered his office at the Embassy back in Adagalasck, Realmer takes the time now to look Jurt over and see what he is about.

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt pops out of the font like a cork. lands, raising his Logrus and several power markers light up. He looks freaked like a cornered tiger"MY MOTHER? DARA IS HERE??!??!!?!??!?!Shitshitshit.. where.." looking around...Frowning..

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"What?" Realmer says in a distracted way as he looks from the spinning herald to Jurt then the direction Jasra walked off in. Then he looks back to Jurt and says, "You know, Queen Jasra, your moth...." there is a long pause and Realmer actually blushes. "It seems I have forgotten myself and others I am so drunk with power from the Fount... it seems I had forgotten whom I was talking to and whom brought me hear and who is related to whom. I beg your forgiveness, Jurt. It's just that I've never received such a surge of power so quickly and easily... usually such power and energies come slowly and with much effort."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Oh, and Jasra said dinner is at 7 and if you have not arrived by 6 she... no, wait... dinner is at SIX and if you have not arrived by SEVEN she will send a plate of sardines to your quarters... anchovies to your room."

  • Michael James Watson

"Well, when she says she is sending something to your room she fills it top to bottom. I hadn't intended to stay. The fact is that Untara has an.....addictive personality. She bonds to someone and they get to where they can't leave her. Its a magical thing. Dworkin pointed it out to me. It requires she personally chose to set you aside. At that point you are free of it. She does not know this happens. Its not her fault. But it works. She just released me so i came here to rid my self of any residual. I can go back to her now and ill have....protections. I sicced her on Vance."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Well, it's up to you, Jurt. We haven't been gone long, relatively speaking... unless this place has a really fast time flow compared to Vulsar Base. I still think we have time to stop at your club and talk a little business. Plus, I still haven't seen the inside of your club and I am curios."

  • Michael James Watson

"This place is 8 to 1. Vulsar is 60 to 1. I want to get back to Amber for esoteric reasons but a few days here makes sense. We could even go to Kashra"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"As you think best. But where ever we go to talk business, let it be somewhere there is alcohol and smokables and let it be soon. I didn't really get a chance to get a good buzz at the Embassy and it is hard to relax around the King. Random I mean. Julian and I get on well enough... mostly because of what I did for him and his wife, Nina. And as I think on it... let us find a quiet room here and get that drink and smoke and talk. Shall we?"

  • Michael James Watson

"BY all means.. " HE walks back and down a corridor, "Oh... i should probably let him down, huh? The hearld falls. In time through the labyrinthine place he finds his spacious rooms. Currently being cleaned and freshened. He eves a hand and fills a table with bottles and herbs and takes a seat. "We better talk here. Latter will be all about Jasra"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer falls a step or two behind Jurt and follows him to his rooms. He slips the small pouch out of his sleeve pocket and looks at it, then glances up to make sure Jurt is not looking then looks at its contents. (almost forgot that part). Then he puts is away once he knows what it is. Most likely back up the same sleeve. Once at Jurt's room, Realmer looks over the assortment and smells several before deciding on a strong clear rum. He then sniffs his way through the herbs until he picks out the best for a relaxing buzz without hallucinations. He then chooses a chair that is out of melee range (influences of Gangdis) but still close enough for comfortable conversation, sits, turns his bone wand into a long stemmed bone pipe, loads and lights it, draws deeply and holds it a very long time before finally exhaling with a smile and a sigh. Realmer then takes a hearty swig of the rum, holding it in his mouth for a moment before swallowing. By the smell of the burning herbs, Jurt can tell he selected them to go with the rum. “Now, before we begin talking business, there is something else I would like to talk about... or more accurately, somethings I would like you to hear. First, I am going to ask that we trust one another...” Realmer snorts and smiles, then chuckles softly before continuing. “That we trust one another as much as our respective family's and upbringing's will allow, that is. I am hoping that you and I can have a deeper respect for one another and a deeper level of trust, if that is possible. There are some things I will have to share with you if we are to do business and some things I would like to share... but I will have to have your Word, and your Trust, that you will not betray my secrets or betray me and by extension, my companions and my loyalties.” “As you may, or may not know, I am not of the Line of Oberon and was not raised in Amber nor spent any time in Amber prior to or during the Black Road War and Patternfall. I was raised, for a time, by my Grandfather, Dworkin, in a distant Shadow of High Magic. When Grandfather thought I was ready, or when he thought he couldn't put it off any longer, he brought me to a place where I could walk a Pattern, a place called Ambir; a Shade of Amber that is nothing more than a Ghost Shadow, an Amber that failed and fell and is now, and will forever be, decaying into ruin and rubble. Dworkin didn't feel it was safe to bring me to Amber at that time... I know it was sometime after the forming of The Black Road, but well before Pattenfall. We spent little time in Ambir but while there he taught me the basics of how to use the powers of the Pattern, how to create Trumps and how to further manipulate High Order Magics... then he took me back into Shadow, where he said I would be safe, then he left again. I spent most of my life living in and exploring Shadow, away from Amber and its Influences. But after many decades of exploring Shadow and experimenting with and improving my powers, I grew more curious about Amber and began making my way through Shadow in that direction. I didn't know where Amber was, exactly, but I did know where Ambir was and that it was close... close enough, to Amber to serve my purposes.” “I had been hanging around the Shadows in the general area of Ambir and Amber for a few years, an area outside the Golden Circle I affectionately call the 'Tarnished Circle'. This was right before King Random ordered that all Offspring be Brought into the Fold, as it were... since I was not far from Amber, relatively speaking, it was not difficult for Dworkin to locate me and escort me to Amber and introduced me to the King so I could Swear my Fealty and Declare my Loyalty. That was back in the early 30's, shortly after you arrived and established Thin Whip's. I went mostly unnoticed by the Family... most of the Family. I spent a lot of time in the lower levels of Castle Amber, and the Library, studying, researching and... creating. When I did leave the Castle it was almost always at night and I did my best to avoid any unnecessary trouble... back then.” Realmer pauses to smile reflectively then continues. “Then I started paying more attention to the goings on in the lower levels of the castle and the upper levels too... then I got noticed and got appointed as Amber's Ambassador to Adagalasck and have been quite occupied there ever since.” Realmer fills his glass and takes a sip, then asks, “So, can we work together, Jurt? Can we establish a respect and trust between us?”

  • Michael James Watson

"You're legend is as interesting as it is unadvertised. The vampire of the depths. I have often wanted to visit the depths but I'm sort of on Random's restricted list. Not likely he will ever trust me. So why should you trust me? I've done you no harm and I've spent a long time in Amber.. there is much to learn over the gaming tables and dance floors. The question is what do you want?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Well, I have no reason not to trust you. As you have said, you have done nothing to harm me and I nothing to harm you. And I feel that since we were both raised outside of Amber we may share some common views, which could help us form a more trustworthy relationship. I am hoping that you will be able to provide some access to people, information and powers that I may not be exposed to otherwise. Plus... It's good to know someone outside the family."

  • Michael James Watson

"Well, then , lets sing kumbiya....What do you want? "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer takes a few puffs while he considers what he really does want from Jurt. He takes a sip of the rum then another puff and lets it out with a sigh and a large cloud of smoke. "I guess what I really want, Jurt... is a friend... now that I truly think on it." He pauses again and takes another puff. "A friend that is not a family member or of Amber. Someone I can talk to about Amber, and other things, who has an outsider's point of view like I do. A... non-Amber point of view. And having someone to share with that will not necessarily report back to the King... or other Royal or Official ears. It would be nice to just have someone to banter with, talk magic and politics and such without having to feel someone is looking over my shoulder all the time. No offense, Bob." Realmer says as he turns to face the purple beholder hovering over his right shoulder. The Beholder turns slightly and looks out of the corner of it's central eye at Realmer and says in a deep rich baritone voice, "None taken." Then Bob the Beholder looks at Jurt and says, "Plus, you're probably the only person Realmer knows that he could talk to about Necromancy and other Taboo Magics without receiving a look of disdain or a lecture." "Thank you for your input, Bob; succinct and helpful as always" Realmer replies as he toasts his familiar and takes a gulp followed by a puff.

  • Michael James Watson

He nod, "Lets just keep in mind that I am sort of on the run from Chaos and want to be on good terms with Amber.. I've visited Azcala but it not a touristy place. I'll tell you this. Amber is less crazy then Chaos.. Im soon to go to Avalong to see my brother who i attempted to kill for aa long time..So lets keep "friend" as an across the table term. Not that im opposed but id hate to have you blamed for my fouls. Im always eager to chat about magics of course.. New info is a blesing. "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Yes, bandying about the word 'friend' is a quick way to get them killed. A lesson I know well. Even way back in my days as an Adventurer I would never refer to my friends as anything more than Adventuring Companions or Acquaintances, for their safety and mine. And I'll do my best to keep you on good terms with Amber and the King... as you yourself said, my credentials are impeccable. And I'm not specifically looking to do anything that will put me or others on bad terms with the Crown... but I do feel a bit restricted in Amber... even in the dungeons I knew I was being watched. In Adagalasck I felt under less scrutiny, but was still working for the Crown's interests. I guess I'm just looking to do some things that I want to do and not be scrutinized." Realmer takes another swig then another puff and says, "I must say; most excellent libations. I am certainly feeling a bit more relaxed. Thank you for the opportunity to unwind a bit, Jurt, it is appreciated."

  • Michael James Watson

looking into the pouch, Realmer sees 5 marble sized stones, one each purple, blue, green, yellow, and red.

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt looks curiously, "Something bright and shiny i gather, I can smell the magic from here. Lets start our table friendship with what they are. We can talk beholders later"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer raises an eyebrow as he looks at Jurt... then smiles, recalling days of yore showing off the spoils of dungeon delving with companions around a table in a tavern over drinks. "Sure. Why not. But I'm pretty sure I'm going to need another drink and some more herbs for this." Realmer uses a Cantrip to 'Present' the bottle of rum to his hand, he refills then reverses the Cantrip to put the bottle back. Another Cantrip brings him some more herbs directly to his pipe which he lights with yet another Cantrip.. Then he smiles as he inhales and presents the Stones to Jurt by dumping them into the palm of his own hand.

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt whistles..."I thought as much.. Wonder where Nina got them.. One of each. Get 50 service coins and you can petition for Lordship in Mandalay.. Impressive.. I've a a green and a Blue..Tricky to use. they tend to not be good combat items.. good from peaceful pursuits though."

  • Michael James Watson

"Jasra would teach you to enter the Font for one of those. But it makes one crazy for a time. "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"I'd prefer to keep my senses, libations excluded, thank you and no. Though I am intrigued by the Fount of Power, I have heard the stories and read what is available in Amber... and now that I have viewed it, felt it and experienced the tiniest fraction of its Power... I am impressed but wary. Leave it at that for now." Realmer takes a puff and rolls the Stones around in his hand then says, "I must say, certainly an unexpected gift. I recall reading about them and their powers in a tome in the Castle Library, and I agree; they are not specifically combat oriented nor is their power necessarily aggressive... buuuut... if used wisely, they could be an effective support tool in combat. As any good Apprentice Wizard knows; 'Wizards are not Warriors. Wizards are Support for Warriors. Stay back. Use your wits. Stay alive to cast your Spells.' Fuckin' Bigby. What in the Hells does he know." Realmer laughs, sounding a bit drunk and high. Realmer begins juggling the Stones, using Cantrips to make up for any poor tosses or catches. He also focuses his Psyche on them all, to see if they glow like the tome said they would. Once glowing, he blows a smoke ring through the center of them, then smiles at Jurt.

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt chuckles and leans back..."They can be attuned.. You might want to walk them through the pattern.."

  • Michael James Watson

"I bore mine through a woven Logrus. Hurt like hell but they bound to me"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Yes, I was contemplating that... and I will be accompanying the King on his Royal Procession along the Jeweled Road to Mandalay... hmmm... perhaps I shall walk the Pattern and attune them just prior to leaving."

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt,"Random is taking a Progress to Mandalay? Hell yes you want to attune them.. Swallow them and pass them through your colon if you think that will make them closer to you. hmmm Think Random would let me come along. Probably a good chance to make some credit in Random's poker game. "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Oh. You didn't know. Oh my, faux pas. I have spoken too freely." Realmer laughs and takes another puff before letting the juggled Stones fall into his cupped hands. He puts all away but one; the Yellow. He holds it in his hand tightly to see if the double buzz goes away. "I can ask who else is going and see what I can do. No promises. Not really sure why he wants me along considering he has many others who are more powerful than I to take along. And why is the bond with the Stones so important? Do they function better? Or is it a matter of easier retrieval if lost or stolen?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"And how does one get Service Coins for Mandalay Lordship. Since I will be going there I might want to think about getting some, getting a Lordship and taking the Mark."

  • Michael James Watson

"Be of service to Mandalay. The details are understandably vauge. Adrian might give you them for showing up. He is collecting those of Amber blood. Has more then Chaos does and we brew our own. I understand running a venue in the Dramaturge pays well. Either way, Adrian keeps track so no surprise visitors show up.

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt sets out a silver box and takes the lid off. Swirling it briefly it becomes the size of a palm. Pouring the contents of the box on the tray the multicolored powder shimmer in the light. Taking a 5 finger pinch of smoking herb he mixes the two together. Filling two pipes with the mixture he pushes one over and lights his. Holding the smoke he starts speaking, exhaling a cloud of multicolored smoke. "The thing to remember is that Mandalay is a primal realm on the same scale as Amber or Avalon. It was meant to rival Chaos as well. It may talk all sweetness and nature peacefulness but these realms are at war even if their rulers and people are not. Whatever Ygg or Adrian intended the second thing the sentient Mark of Mandalay did was gather together every shadow with big-assed roads, every major shadowtrail and ripped those shadows lose to lay them side by side,connecting the roads, and making them open to everyone. That may seem like a feature for communication but it was also a declaration of war. No matter what the realm kings and primal beasts may think, that's what the powers consider the jeweled road. Keep that in mind when you use those stones. They may be powerful, but they are partisan connections to a manipulative inscription." Edited to correctly add Ygg.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer taps out his own Bone Pipe then returns it to its Bone Wand shape, then he fishes out one of the Mandalay Stones, the Red one, and places in against the butt-end of the Wand. The butt-end of the Wand reshapes into a tiny skeletal hand to hold the Stone. Realmer then takes the pipe offered by Jurt, lights it with a Cantrip and inhales deeply. He holds it for Jurt's entire speech then finally exhales the multicolored smoke. The he flicks his Wand in the air, as though he is wracking someones knuckles and smiles at the fiery glow upon the Wand... then he begins idly tracing symbols in the air, like a kid with a burning stick pulled from a fire. "More manipulative than the Pattern? Or the Logrus? I find that hard to believe considering what both of those Sentient Inscriptions have done to people, places and Reality itself thus far in the Known History of the Multiverse. I do not doubt that the Pattern and Logrus took the creation of the Mark of Mandalay and the creation of the Jeweled Road as an aggressive move, to be certain." "And, as is always the case with Artifacts of great power, especially those based upon a Great Power, caution in their use is certainly warranted. But thank you for your cautionary advice; it's always prudent to 'Read the Warning Labels before Use'." "Though, I already have some experience with this type of Power Artifact; I'm sure you saw the Green Jewel of Judgment I bear. When Dworkin gave me the Green Jewel... loaned me the Green Jewel...? GAVE me the Green Jewel, to guard and use wisely, he schooled me in its Powers and usage and of course, warned me of its Side Effects and certain 'attentions' I might draw due to being Attuned to it and possessing it. I am sure the Pattern of Amber would love to absorb the Ghost Realms of Ambir and its Pattern to make itself and its Realms stronger, especially since Ambir's Realms are all but empty of any life... but I will do all I can to prevent that from happening... I've grown rather fond of that Ghost Realm." Realmer waves his fiery glowing Bone Wand dismissively in the air. "So what of you, Jurt. What powerful little trinkets would you like to show-off? I am certain you have something other than your Mandalay Stones."

  • Michael James Watson

"Well, these days I try and keep a low profile. It took a lot of being chewed and spit out to make me reconsider my priorities.

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt Pulls out a box and opens it to pull out a pair of short thin fighting knives. They are carved from bone "These are Pit Knives. Made from the bones of Abyssal demons. One has to defeat a certain breed of big boned creature in the depths of the abyss, then sacrifice them to the Serpent. Then one carves them in a specific manner. While these are not exactly rare they are double tough to come by and not every Lord of Chaos is taught to get them when they are taught to assay the Logrus. . They will rip through nearly any armor but tears the hell out of abyssal demons. They are extremely potent at harming creatures of Chaos leaving wounds that are extraordinarily hard to heal from taking 10 times the normal healing times or magics. Pretty wicked on undead too. They detect as non-magic, and once attuned can not be stolen. I can leave these in Sawall Way and call them to my hand in a fraction of a second all the way to the pattern room in the dungeons of amber. To non-chaosian creatures they are little more then wickedly sharp bone knives.. But to Chaosian creatures they are deadly. And, Realmer, bear in mind, the blood of Barimen is the blood of Chaos"

  • Michael James Watson

"Mind you, i try not to get in any knife fights around Amber. People frown on poison knives like these. Also I'm sort of glad i had not finished these while i was still mad at Merlin.. Might have come out badly. I've found violence is too risky,"

  • Michael James Watson

He uncoils a whip from around his waist where it had rested hidden from sight. "This is my weapon of Choice. Flexible, takes an expert to work. And I'm an expert. This will rip flesh and cradle glass. Its half sentient and its been through the Logrus. Each of the sons of Sawall have one. Mine is named Frakaol. Merlin's was named Frakir. They are loyal and helpful. It can find me if lost."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer looks over the weapons as Jurt presents them. He even brought up the Pattern Lens to look at them more closely. "Very nice, indeed. And I am well aware that the House of Barimen IS a House of Chaos and that we all have the Blood of Chaos running through us. Grandfather made sure I never forgot that little piece of family information. Especially since I am a full Shape Shifter; unlike the 'Cousins' that only have a limited form of Shape Shifting. And I have considered assaying the Logrus, should the opportunity arise. Again, very impressive weapons. I never studied the use of weapons much, hardly at all to be honest... but I do know how to use a few types and I do possess one weapon... something I made myself. After all, if you want something done right; do it yourself." Realmer pulls out the Bone Wand holding the Red Mandalay Stone and changes it into its Scrimshawed Bone Staff form; the red stone now housed in the left eye socket of the skull atop the staff. He lets the Staff fall from his grasp, but before it hits the floor it Shifts into a full sized Displacer Beast that appears to be Undead due to its decaying flesh and bones showing through in a few places... though Jurt can tell it is not 'truly' an undead creature. "Hex; my Staff of Necro-Beasts, as I like to call it. Capable of taking the form of any weapon, item or any small to large-ish creature, though it always looks undead; I like to keep up my dark and sinister appearance. Capable of taking on the many, if on all, of the abilities of the creature it mimics. Capable of dealing extreme damage and penetrating most armors, even highly magicked ones. Extremely fast and combat capable. Fully sentient and psychically connected to me. Capable of returning to me via Trump image implanted within. Capable of Racking and Using Spells and also equipped with Power Words. Conjured from my own blood, forged on an 'altar' in the Pattern Room in the Dungeon of Castle Amber, infused with the Power of the Pattern through the use of my Shade Jewel of Judgment and by walking the Pattern with it during and after its creation. Quenched in the Waters of the Pond in the Pattern Room. As I said; if you want something done right; do it yourself." Realmer takes another puff off the pipe that Jurt passed him and the summons Hex back to his hand and back into the form of a Bone Wand.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

This is exactly what the Bone Wand looks like, minus the Stone.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

This is more or less what the Scrimshawed Bone Staff looks like. No glowing eyes, just empty eye sockets and the shaft is more detailed with carvings running its entire length.


  • Michael James Watson

"Considering the Logrus? That's like thinking of having one's frontal lobe removed. There is a short cut you know, yes"?

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer laughs and says, "I did say considering ... in fact I am considering many things... But that does not mean I am actually going to undertake them. I have made too many mistakes by moving too quickly to grab for power in the past and it cost me. I have paid my dues for those mistakes. I intend not to make them again. And to which shortcut are you referring?"

  • Michael James Watson

"The Woven Logrus. There are a number around. They need substantially less training. If you are a talented shapechanger it mostly takes nerve and quick thinking to assay, depending which you find. I know of 3 off hand i can reach easily"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Ah yes, the Woven Logrus. I have heard of them. A possibility worth considering. Certainly safer than the Logrus itself. I am always considering adding new power sources to my repertoire. Recently assayed the Spiral of the Four Winds... the Squiggle of Adagalasck. I was considering the Mal at Reiss prior to being assigned as the Ambassador to Adagalasck, but it seems the Spiral is of similar use... perhaps better."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Speaking of things on the Chaos end of the Multiverse... I have been considering the benefits of the Dufiro. What is your opinion on them and their benefits... and drawbacks?"

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt smiles..."ah.. the Dufirosim...Lovely people. Depends what you want to accomplish. I have several myself but they are at the club. Both bound and bonded pacts. They are a bargaining people. Gain power for their service. Talents across the board. t They work the hell out of the Chaos end of the universe yet they have Greater Dufiro, the Ava Dufirosim, who are Law Dufiro that would bargain softly for a time in Amber. I think in time he eastern realms like Amber will find much to interest them in bargaining with them. There is the pesky thing about slavery but that's a judgment call all around. I can introduce you to several once we get back to town"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Well, if it is an unforced agreement, then I personally would not consider it slavery. I mean, if the Dufiro is willing and a mutually beneficial agreement is reached, then I don't see how it could be considered slavery. But that is just my view point and opinion. And I would relish that introduction; thank you again."

  • Michael James Watson

"Sure. I wouldn't bind a dufiro against its will. makes the item its in have a flaw. But others do. Its quiet common really. A binding ritual is different if its mutual or if its forced. Many in chaos treat them as little more then freeform power sources to be devoured at will. i come from an unpleasant land"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Would it be unwise to bind a Dufiro to an Item that already possess a sentience? I was thinking about my Staff, specifically, but also generally I am curious."

  • Michael James Watson

"No, some items have many bound to it. Its a matter of comparative powers and personalities. You wouldn't want to bind a fire and water elemental together. They fight.. In many ways though the dufiro like multiple bindings. Less lonely for them over the years"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"I see. So it's a matter of power and personality compatibility... interesting. Can they be bound to living creatures? I don't mean like my Staff, but more like my Familiar, or Pet... or even myself. Is that possible? Or advisable?"

  • Michael James Watson

"Again, its a matter of bargining. Finding a Dufiro that's compatible. Many are bound to animals and even sentient. Various Dufiro of Guard are often bound to living things. Its all in the bargin...

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"All good to know, thank you again. If I may pose another question? I know I have been asking a lot of them and it may be your turn... if we are playing by 'Family Rules'. But I am curious what you know about some of the Lesser Initiations, lesser than Pattern and Logrus that is, and how they react when the Greater Initiation is taken again... specifically, what may happen to my Spiral Imprint when I walk the Pattern again. I know you are no expert in Pattern and this question might be better asked of Arloxedra, but as you may know, he and I are not on the best of terms. I'm sure I could also ask any of the Elders, especially those of Arcane minds... but I really don't like pestering them with my questions; which I am sure they find a bit bothersome and basic. I quite often feel like a very young child speaking to the condescending adults when around the Elders. Well, not all of them and not always. I am pretty sure I know what will happen, but I am curious to hear your take on it and if you know any secrets that might be of use to me."

  • Michael James Watson
  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr. 'The "Family Game" always struck me as pretty adversarial. I played it in chaos and all i got was used, screwed and spit out. I lost ears and toes and...things... depending on stuff i learned in the family game. And i damn near got killed several times trying to get good juice for the squeeze. I hooked up with one of Merlin's ex girlfriends hoping to get good juice on Merlin to trade. Worked out poorly. "

He repacks his pipe. "Your history is in Low Order Magic. I might like to learn some of it in time. It has its uses but for me it was High Order Sorcery or nothing. By lesser initiations i assume you mean Squiggles, not Low Order Initiations?"

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt stops, as if listening, withdraws his Trump deck and shuffles through it.. "Hmmm New Card....Henry, Son of Fiona and MANDOR?!?!?!?!?!?!?!? What the galloping fuck!??!?!?!!!!!!"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Correct. Squiggles." Realmer responds then, "What? Who?"

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt lays the trump before you "Henry, a son of Fiona and Mandor.. damn.. damn... a crown prince for the crown prince of Sawall....."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Now how interesting is that. And how interesting the timing... just before King Random's trip to Mandalay... perhaps not connected, but perhaps..." Realmer leaves it hanging.

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt pours another pitcher of brews. "The thing is...I can't imagine Mandor giving up the powers of a sanctified marriage under the Serpent and the powers the child would have from it. Having a illegitimate child is alright but they lose out on a lot of things. Inheritance, prestige, status in the line of succession. Especially after the crap Mother went through getting Merlin declared legitimate during Patternfall. And if Mandor, heir of Sawall had married Princess Fiona for fucks sake the towers of Theldane would be ringing. She was a darling of Chaos when she was begging for power to unseat Oberon...Now.." Drinking a full tankard, "And if they Married in a unicorn rite they might have kept it quiet but i don't see how. Chaos would have been screaming bloody red war over it. They would be banishing him, they might still... That would make either Despil or myself heir to Sawall... This kid is in for a serious thumping east and west. Crap...i hate this.. but i may have to call Despil, or Mandor....Maybe,...maybe I should visit Sawall Way..." He looks thoughtful, sipping his beer. Looking up, "So, Realmer, you are, technically, foot loose and fancy free at the moment, aren't you?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Wellllll...." Realmer draws out the word while reviewing in his mind his most recent conversation with the King of Amber and whether or not going to the Courts of Chaos would contradict anything the King requested. "Random DID ask me to keep you occupied and out of trouble... while at Vulsar Base..." he pauses with a devious smile on his face. "I could certainly keep you occupied in the Courts of Chaos... and as far as keeping you out of trouble... well, you're not at Vulsar Base so I think I can be cleared of that duty... and Random did say to enjoy a short vacation..." He drains the glass Jurt poured for him and then takes a huge lungful of smoke of the sparkling herb mixture in the pipe then exhales and says through the multicolored smoke "So yes, I guess my 'vacation' begins now and I am 'footloose and fancy free'. I would love to visit the Courts and your family." Realmer's grin is wide. "Lead on, my good man, lead on." But then he adds quickly, "Should I change my appearance? An I dressed appropriately? Will this be something formal? Will my Chaos Form be needed to serve proper Etiquette?"

  • Michael James Watson

"OK... I need to make a few stops, nothing major.. I should make a few calls to put off some business. Lets plan for the morning. 9 hours here.. hmmm should be... a blue turning in Chaos.. We can Trump to Zilla, light a few candles, check the Banns... But.. going into battle is easier then going home...

  • Michael James Watson

"You are going to need local talent as a defender.. We can arrange that at Zilla."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Yes, good idea. The Fane of Zilla... always wanted to see if there was a niche devoted to me. Guess I'll find out soon. I wonder if I should check in with Random... to check in on Kevin... I know the time flow here is faster than Amber, but the time flow of Vulsar is even faster than that... now that I think about it... it's odd that Random, or anybody for that matter, has not contacted me... or you."

  • Michael James Watson

(I could run Jasra's dinner but it would take hours...Lets list it under, "Did Jasra say anything about----")

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

(good idea.)


The Fane of Zilla, Shrines and Hagalta

  • Michael James Watson

In the morning a breakfast plate is delivered to Realmer's room. A note telling you to meet Jurt at the Font when you are ready. Upon arriving he is surprisingly well dressed and trimmed. He wears a rapier sword on a left hand draw, his bone knives in his belt, a few pouches. His Hat has demon feathers. A large medallion looks like the royal symbol of house Sawall. He shimmers as if he has just stepped from the font. Jasra is there, dressed in woman's attire with similar notations to Jurt. As if she intends to act as part of Jurt's entourage. She wears a medallion smaller then Jurt's with the same symbol.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer most assuredly drank and smoked too much and most likely forgot about the Mandalay Stones before passing out. In the morning however, he uses the Yellow Stone to detox and then eats his breakfast a couple of bites at a time while he checks his belongings to make sure they are all there... not that he distrusts Jurt, but there are others here that may not be above pilfering from a guest. Once breakfast and inventory are complete, Realmer makes his way to the Fount.

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt nods in greeting. "Alright. We are going to trump to the Fane of Zilla. Have you been there before? "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"No, I have never been there before. I have only read descriptions and seen drawings."

  • Michael James Watson

"Its a massive temple at the edge of the abyss. Patternfall was fought there because it has a sort of destiny trap drawing people there. Now it is where the Jeweled Road ends. Its a touristy place now for people from all realms..While there I want us to take a meeting. Are you particularly attached to your attire? I mean is it magical, defensive, sentient?

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Yes, I am quite attached to my garb; it is all three and more. I can change it's appearance if that is required."

  • Michael James Watson

Jasra, "It'll have to be the medallion, then, "Jurt nods. "While there you will be under my protection. It won't make you safer but it will mean the only people likely to kill you are willing to piss off the alliance Sawall is in. Namely Hendrake, Helgram, and several minor houses. Unlikely, but there it is. You should consider if you want to go as yourself, a member of the House of Amber and Barimen, or incognito...Either has its dangers. Though, all things considered, few would want to attack you if your wear the medallion of Amber. " He hand you a blank silver medallion. "Ill inscribe that as you like. Currently its just mithril. Once there the meeting is with a broker for Dufirosim. We'll bargain for a short term Guard Masoja Dufiro to protect you from native issues in chaos. We will bind him to the medallion."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"As you both deem best. But my Robe's major function is to protect and defend me; perhaps the Dufiro might work well with it. Perhaps not. And I would prefer to be myself on my first visit to the Courts. As to the medallion, keep it simple, no need to advertise more than needed. That it shows I am from Amber should be enough." Realmer then gives his Robe a mental command and it becomes a fine set of silken robes of dark gray with purple and red trimmings. The simple ring on his finger (Satura's Ring) becomes a jeweled band of platinum bearing a large black sapphire surrounded by smaller black opals.

  • Michael James Watson

"Fair enough. A Unicorn enameled in green like a shield." He casts the spell and the symbol implants.." I recommend you not try to hide in a chaos form. Wearing the Amber medallion, well, everyone has a set of the non-magical King Random Trumps and you are in them. Might as well be seen. No need to advertise..."

  • Michael James Watson


  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Then I am ready when you are. I will take your lead and heed your advice." Realmer then turns to his familiar, "Bob, stay close, observe everything, but do nothing unless I command it." Realmer mentally repeats the same directive to his Ring, his Wand and his Robe before nodding to Jurt and Jasra.

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt opens a trump gate to the Fane of Zilla.

  • Michael James Watson

Under a dark blue sky the Abyss only barely wins over the distraction of a zillion architectural styles of massive cathedral spanning the horizon. To the north is a city of great temporary natures. Tents, wood huts, vardo wagons,and camps.. a merchant area of hundreds of businesses. People of all descriptions, from human to elven to demon are in evidence in the vast throngs,

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt wends his way into the great cathedral and follows many different twistings till he enters into an open area among the crammed together cathedrals. The courtyard lead to a great door. To the left of it i a giant tournament field with many matches being fought.

  • Michael James Watson

Walking up aspirants walk into and out of the great door. Looking up, in the massive architrave, is the Unicorn of Amber.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer keeps his arms in, his eyes open and his wits about him.

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt, "The Cult Halls of the Amber Devotional"

  • Michael James Watson

"They were underground for the first 50 or so years after Patternfall. But it was decided that hidden worshipers were more dangerous then open one"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"I can't disagree with that sentiment."

  • Michael James Watson

Going up a man in a priests robe approaches, bows, "Great Lords.. Welcome. Your passage was foretold in the oracles and the.." Jurt puts his hand on the man's chest." YaAYaaa.. I know.. i know.. Can you take us to My nave?"

  • Michael James Watson

He nods...Turns and walks in. Once in it is easy to see the prince's alcoves, each with a statue and worshipers, candles and offerings.

  • Michael James Watson

Coming into a nake it is filled with alcoves for the Benedict line of Lintra. Including Jurt, Despil, Merlin, Dara, as well as Vek and others.. Worshipers kneel or sit among them. They all look to Jurt as he enters. Jurt walks over to his alter. he starts scooping the offerings into a bag of holding, to the amazement of those present. Looking to Realmer he shrugs, "Stuff is mine, right?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer grins and nods his head in admiration.

  • Michael James Watson

Looking over the crowd he leaps on his alter, and waves, tossing silver coins by the thousands among the worshipers.

  • Michael James Watson

A young woman tugs Realmer's robe at the elbow

  • Michael James Watson

"M'lord, Will you be visiting your shrine?" She shows a deck of cards and holds yours on top"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Without taking his eyes off of the spectacle that is Jurt tossing coins to his followers he says, "It certainly is possible. Since I am here it would be odd to NOT visit it. But things don't always work out the way we want, do they?" Though Realmer does not look at the young woman with his eyes, but he does look through his familiar's many eyes.

  • Michael James Watson

She is of shadow origin, probably of a world near the Fane. Humanoid, she has certain vampiric appearances but is certainly alive

  • Michael James Watson

She starts walking over to a far nave, and disappears into it

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer recalls traveling through a few worlds where celebrities were idolized and people wanted their 'autograph', especially on photos or placards of the celebrity. Realmer was considering signing her Trump of him before she walked away... perhaps he would see her again.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer is tempted to follow... but wise enough to know not to go alone in an unfamiliar place... especially one like the Fane of Zilla. He waits for Jurt to finish his redistribution of wealth.

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt looks at you quizzically. "Something happening?" Jasra is talking to Jurt's followers.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Oh, someone just asked if I intended to visit my shrine. I told her it was possible. And to be honest, I would rather like to see it... but thought it best not to wander off. 'Never split up the party.' as more than one of my old adventuring companions would say." Realmer grins at Jurt then chuckles. "Wisdom is wisdom."

  • Michael James Watson

"Why not.. One never knows around here but that is certainly wisdom.."

  • Michael James Watson

Walking down after the child the halls are less busy but show signs of frequent attendees. Down a ways past a merchant selling Amber oriented merchandise, Jurt stops, picks out a deck of the non-magical version of the King Random Trumps. Paying a silver he opens the pack and shuffles, finding Henry's card. "Its in the non-magic decks now.. Elegant construct of Random's, these cards.. He can tell where every person who carries a magical deck is. And look in on their trumps i bet." Following to a new nave there is a large statue of Satura. in the center, with smaller alcoves around them. Attendants and devotees light candles and incense. Attendance seems small but friendly. The child is there pointing, and several adults look your way.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer does not turn away or try to hide who he is. He looks to the statue of his mother and bows his head respectfully towards her visage, then he approaches the alcove where the young woman he saw before is, he smiles a genuine and friendly smile to the group there and then looks at what is within the alcove.

  • Michael James Watson

They back away, as they did for Jurt, though he is a familiar face in his alcove.

  • Michael James Watson

In the alcove is a statue of Realmer. It has several candles though clearly has a sign of light use, as much in this nave does.

  • Michael James Watson

A robed figure approaches.. "The worshipers in the nave are not yet devout. Though the worship of Satura has grown recently due to a number of visitors attributing healings to their visit. There have been several very successful rituals as well. Several sacrifices of note. The healings are the best, bringing in those of the Chaos realms, soon to be followers. Simple magics really, but even in this magic rich land such beneficial magic seems rare."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Fascinating" Realmer says. "You have been quite informative. Thank you."

  • Michael James Watson

"My pleasure. I knew you would come here eventually. Random has used you up and shown you the door, has he? I'm sure very politely and with a smile of good-natured cheer, to not alarm you. Now the realm is given over to the children of Oberon in their entirety, isn't it? And what thanks did they give you? To your dear sweet mother who I adore?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

At this last question, Realmer turns to face the robed figure to see their face. He is ready for something very bad but will keep his wits about him. "An interesting perspective. And what interest is all of that to you?"

  • Michael James Watson

"I have some experience with being cast aside. But my pains were earned.. The lessons were hard ones. Tell me, were you going to light a candle to your mother? The merchant back there sells candles but You may have one from my stores if you wish. They are behind her alter with my bedroll and a few bits of food. I hope it not to offensive to your so mighty stature that i eat the food sacrifices given all in the nave when i clean the hall. your sisters both have small alters but they have done little to attract interest of the religious this far west. Your brother had an alter but he threw it down himself when he passed into Chaos. Beware. He is within Chaos and he is bitter."

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt hears the last bit and looks at the man, letting a bone knife slip unseen into his hand. Jasra is speaking across the way

  • Michael James Watson

The man shades his face but turns slightly toward Jurt. "Would you draw blood on holy ground outside the battle circles? A Lord of Chaos who so violates Zilla would be reviled, would he not?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Thank you again for your information. I will light a candle but I do have my own; again, thank you. And if you are in need and tend these shrines, then eating the food left is not an offense, in my eyes. Nor would it be in my mother's eyes, I am fairly certain. But I must ask; who are you? And why do you hide your face from us?"

  • Michael James Watson

"I hide my face because i only have half." Turning he show from beneath the hood a face half burned off with ruined ears, missing eye and cheeks burned to show gums devoid of teeth except stumps around ripped out holes..Bone at the chin peaks out of healed wounds.' Jurt whispers.."He has a pattern imprint, and others.. His hood drops back to show the half a face he has. Hagalta says, "Yes I do, Lord Jurt. And a son should know his father's face.


  • Michael James Watson

"Would you light a candle in my alcove, son?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer nods to Jurt with an 'I am aware' feel to it when he mentions the Imprints Hagalta bears. "No father, I would not light a candle in your alcove." Realmer's voice is even but restrained. His tone is flat but holds an edge of anger. "What you did to mother was despicable. Deplorable. Abhorrent. You will get no more pity or kindness from me. Nor shall I berate you or cast you down further on this day. Do not spoil my first visit here, of all places. And do not spoil it for the others who are here. Begone and bother me no further on my visit here."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"If you have any love for me at all, if you care for me in any way, you will turn around right now and leave without saying a word. After I have seen the things I want to see and done the things I want to do while I am visiting here... Perhaps, just Perhaps I will stop by here before leaving and perhaps, just perhaps I will speak with you further then. But I make no promises."

  • Michael James Watson

He turns and opens his robe, withdrawing a red crystal of many shapes. Moving to Jurt and shows it to him. Jurt looks at it like a dead cat. "This is Azcalan artwork?....no....sorcery.,....hmmm. Ritual sorcery...ritual sacrifice...It howls....it feels abyssal in a way but...different....What is it?" Hagalta shakes his head, puts a finger over half lips and tries to sssshhhhh. Points the finger at Realmer. Turning and walking to the alter he starts moving candles and nodding to other servitors.


Dealing with Dufiro

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt leads way from the massive Fane of Zilla past the tent encampment into the merchant area. Weaving among the selling the refuse and treasures of shadows that wash up on the sea of the abyss an opening occurs and a massive tent rests in the center. The light is dark and everything is nearly black and white. Around it rove creatures of nightmare and fantasy dreams. Jurt walks into the crowds and they at first turn as if to fight or devour but then step back making a path to the tent's entrance. He turns, whispering... "ah... I may be a minor Lord of Chaos but they know where the profit lies" Stepping to the front a man in black formal wear steps up, bows, "How may we be of service, Lord?"

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt-"We come to bargain. We seek a broker of refinement. We do no come to deal in trifles. Souls are on the line"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer is having the time of his life, regardless of what his face or body express. He is still being cautious at they travel the Fane and the tent Bazaar, but he is reminded of many markets and bazaars of the past from various Shadows he lived in or visited; Realmer has always enjoyed wandering the market areas, observing the wares, the sellers, the buyers, and those who are neither. Realmer knows markets and knows how to be watchful and wary.... but he is still enjoying himself. When Jurt approaches the massive tent, Realmer focuses his attention on those around it and those guarding it. When Jurt speaks to the person out front, Realmer looks him over, top to bottom then back up. Then he speaks to him. "And please, do not waste our time."

  • Michael James Watson

The Tyler looks at Realmer then Jurt-"Lord, might i suggest a broker? an honest one, himself a Masoja Dufiro of Change. He has contacts across the Black Worlds. He would give you an extremely high price for such rare merchandise. Not just baubles but powers of War and fire.. Might I contact him so he may prepare a bargaining space?"

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt smiles, looks at Realmer, "Maybe, though, " reaching over to stroke Realmer's chin, "I doubt i would part with him today. I'm looking for a broker in Guard and Combat. I am also looking for someone who deals in Rage".

  • Michael James Watson

He looks thoughtful..."thou teases me. AS you take the left ways find the sign of Calat of Cynsure..He is currently holding skins for Masoja of Guard, Combat, Rage and warfare. His Ava are numerous. His connections below that are vast.. " Jurt, "Yes, Tyler, i shall seek him first and if we bargain I'll give him your respect. Otherwise we will seek the Ring Master. I know the way" He nods, "Yes lord.. ah.. might i gossip? " Jurt inhales, "Try" "Word is that there will be a Progress of the King of Amber to Theldane to submit to High Lord Swayvil"

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt nods"You know my lineage of course. The rumor i heard is that the King of Amber comes not to submit but to petition for a royal princess to make his second wife. My source is not familiar with the houses of Chaos so when he tells me that King Random wants a second wife of Helgram, Channicut, or Singaldon, i am not sure he is reliable. I am here to see if a Sawall wife might be available.. but.. Tyler, if you share that gossip, i will want my share in Elementals of fire. Agreed?' Tyler-"Oh yes, Lord Jurt" .

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer watches the two banter and listens to the gossip with a blank face. Knowing that his medallion with the Crest of Amber emblazoned upon it is clearly visible, Realmer is careful what he says when he speaks. "I can neither confirm nor deny this information, as not all from Amber are equally informed."

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt sweeps in.

  • Michael James Watson

Leading in left and right along the way the massive tent is subdivided by fabric that barely restricts sound. Reaching a large room, heavily draped with tapestries and fabric a man stands as Jurt enters. He is thin to the point of emaciated. A pair of tightly curled horns on his head. "Yes, I am Calat. The Tyler sent you.. Shall i have my Servant blend us tea while we converse, Lord Jurt? Jurt nods, "Yes, and bring three cups. This Relmopator of Amber and I brought him here to bargain. I have some needs but let us seek his first. I am sure you recognize him from the cards. He is seeking Guard and Defense. I will be looking for Elementals. He may bid his own prices but i shall vouch for them'

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer nods to Jurt then bows to Calat. "Well met, Calat. I do seek Dufiro of Guard or Defense for a short term contract; something to protect me from the hazards of Chaos while I am visiting. Once my visit is concluded and that contract fulfilled, I may very well be seeking a much longer contract for the same Dufiro or another if needed. At that time I may also want to contract with a Combat Dufiro and a Knowledge Dufiro. But all of that will depend upon the outcome of the first contract. Thank you for your time and the offer of tea." Realmer bows again.

  • Michael James Watson

He nods, "Yes, I have a number of Guard and Combat. If it is chaos you sojourn in is a Masoja you need. As for the Knowledge Dufiro, they do not often contract with brokers such as I. You want a short term contract. I suggest Gazil and Risik, a mated pair of Guard and Combat. They work together for short to medium terms. Both are experienced in Chaos. Both have done work for me in Cynsure. they have a companion Ava of Blending that is serving them for mating reasons and will come with them. This pair is my best suggestion for the need you suggest. Shall you consider them?

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Well, that combination sounds almost too good to be true... certainly it will be expensive, in one fashion or another. And the addition of a Blending Dufiro... good for Sorcery and Artistry... excellent. Yes; I shall consider them; most highly. Thank you."

  • Michael James Watson

"I thought a much;. Now, terms. I asume you will not be in Chaos more then a dozen turnings?" Jurt nods. "Then both have small terms.. You are an Amberite...This I know. Would you entertain enhancing their battle weapons by bearing them through a passage of the pattern of Amber?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"That sounds more like a long-term payment to me; but might be possible once the short term contract is fulfilled." Realmer smiles and counters with, "Perhaps some other Enhancements or Empowerments of a Sorcerous nature would be more appropriate? For a short term contract."

  • Michael James Watson

"Really? do you think a minor sorcerer of Amber knows more then great sorcerers of Chaos? Let us set the passage as a long term possibilities. " He makes a small handsign tapping the table. Stands and steps away. Jurt" The tapping is sort of their way of saying, Let me speak to my Client. You may do it and it means, I need to check my money purse. you see?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Yes, I understand. And since he is away.." Realmer looks about to make sure; "Is what he is asking reasonable? I feel he is asking a bit much. And I know I did under offer, but isn't that how haggling is done?"

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt-"Ya, the passage is a big deal.. Passage through the Logrus is a common payment for Masoja. But they are mighty... its borderline. I think you could defend the passage to random, but it would really depend on what powers their war weapons have."

  • Michael James Watson

He comes back with a small woman with green hair and a rather horsey face. "My Lord, Lord Jurt, This is Kala Kala, she is the Blender Ava i spoke of. She requests to enter this bargaining if possible.'

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"By all means" Realmer says. "Well met, Kala Kala, I am Lord Relmopator of Amber." He bows to her.

  • Michael James Watson

She inclines her head. "I am aiding in the blending of two Masoja, Combat and guard, as they seek to procreate. I am aided by spirits of Combat,Guard, Defense and Cleanliness. As well as Ava of Cleanliness. My powers can help the two generate 10 Elementals of fire and earth, as is their origins and one Ava Dufirosim of Guard as is their desire. Lord Jurt, you understand?"

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt nods, "Yes, advanced grade.. Nice work.. "

  • Michael James Watson

Kala-"If you were willing to participate in the perpetration of the waters and oils, chant the rites of blending with me, and sanctified the blending with a reading of the Book of the Serpent, and witness the joining, and.. acknowledge in the Tome of Summoning of this Ava of Guard, it parents would be willing to serve in Chaos and realms as far as Cynsure for 50 Turnings of chaos"

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt chuckles

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer turns to Jurt and asks, "So is she asking for a three-some... four-some, with me or you?"

  • Michael James Watson
  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr. jurt chuckles again, chucking your shoulder-"Only magically... Its actually a pretty gutsy suggestion. Kala, this is your suggestion? When you complete this let us speak. ITs not so much asking you to engage is messy hankypanky as it is as asking to be the ava Guard's godfather "

Pointing a finger at Kala-"And you know it too. 200 Turnings as far as the Dungeons of Amber and right of Summoning for the Ava Guard child for the course of its life"

  • Michael James Watson

The broker steps back.. Kala leans forward, " Sign the Summoning Book in blood. And I'll include service of a Fire Elemental and an Earth Elemental till each is mature and ready to transition to spirit races. One would hope by then he would be generous in providing for their spirit rituals?""

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt nods, "Of course! My companion is by no means cheap. After years of elemental service they would be like his own children.. well, slow neighbor's children at least."

  • Michael James Watson

Kala looks to Realmer, "Is the Lord of Chaos your broker in this?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer looks from Kala Kala to Jurt then back again. He taps the table twice without responding and looks to Jurt. Not knowing if the custom is for the one asking for 'a moment to confer' to leave the table, as he saw Calat do earlier, he awaits Jurt's lead.

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt steps away from the table out of suspected hearing range.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"OK. So this is a bit more complicated and involved than I thought it would be... now I understood every word she and you said, but to be honest I only understood about a third of what was said. I am a little confused... somehow I thought I would be bargaining for Spirits that would inhabit an Artifact or two... not physical beings in the process of mating, wanting me to be a Godfather to one or more offspring and to... raise two offspring... is that right? So, lay it out for me straight, Jurt; what I am getting into? And what is it going to cost me?"

  • Michael James Watson

"The bargaining is for two Masoja to provide visible defense while in Chaos. Kala here however is involved in the two procreating. Blenders often act to make it easier for Dufiro to jump their progeny over the elemental stage. Kala is helping them also jump their child at creation to jump Spirit ranks as well, and that is likely to have the side effect of creating fire and earth elements. To do so she is creating a very complicated ritual. As you know rituals are about combinations of aspects. BY helping with the ritual you lend your psyche essence to help make her dangerously complicated ritual more likely to succeed. And she was hoping you would help on the cheap. 50 turns."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"How long is a Turn in Amber Years?"

  • Michael James Watson

"My suggestion is 200 turns anywhere in Amber and shadow. Plus,the ability to summon the Ava for its whole life. Summoning does not mean it will necessarily do anything, just that you cold call it and bargain with it."

  • Michael James Watson

a turn? Hours, Centuries..Its chaos.. 200 turns would be in the range of 10 amber years'

  • Michael James Watson

the broker leans in, "Amberite, bargain for Dufiro is as much about relationships as it is mercantilism. I am brokering a first meeting. In the future you may be able to contact them directly. familiarity means different deals, you do not know these Masoja, so they bargain hard

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer bows to Jurt then the broker. "Thank you both for your sage advice and counsel. I hope no offense was taken for my need to leave the bargaining table for a moment. We shall return presently."

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt nods. "Dufiro bargain for power and influence to raise their status and power, to build themselves better. In time they have to apply to different races to gain the right to perform racial rights. developing good contacts, such as a Lord of Sawall or a Lord of Amber, shows them to be worthy of the next race they join..

  • Michael James Watson

Kala nods, "You name on their summoning book means anyone who calls them must read that they have dealt with you"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"I see. A way to advance oneself in power and status. So it is as much a reflection on me as it is on them that we have bargained together for power. Fascinating."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Well, I believe we can continue now." Realmer returns to the table with Jurt and sits. "In answer to your question, Kala Kala; Yes, Jurt does act as my Broker in this matter as he is more knowledgeable than I in the matters of Dufiro... and certainly more skilled at bargaining. He knows my needs and my ability to make payment. But let us be clear... most of the contract will be spent away from Chaos and mostly in the area of Amber... most likely. I hope that is acceptable. Also I ask, Kala Kala, are your services and skills on the table for the long term deal as well, or just the short term deal? As I understand it, a Blending Ava would greatly compliment my skills in Sorcery and Trump Artistry."

  • Michael James Watson

Kala nods, "my services are bound to the the blending but once complete i would be eager to make further deals. I would not accompany the Masoja as they serve their contract save when the ritual of blending is held. In point of fact the ritual would be held in the next 3 turns anyway. Afterwards they will have their progeny, a collection of pet Elementals, and i would have my pay. Your involvement would require little time, just the ritual to be held in the realms of the Dufirosim. After the ritual they would have their child, i my pay, you their service and a pair of your own pet Elementals. " Jurt-"Not signed in blood. Signed in your blood, Kala. So, 200 turns to include Chaos and Shadow. 2 Elementals service till mature. for involvement in the ritual to include mixing water and oil, singing a stanza of the rite, reading from the Book of the Serpent, and witnessing the creating. Then signing the Summoning Book, in your blood. And of course, you pay your broker as Lord Realmer pays his." Jurt motions for you to lick your hand and offer to shake hers to seal the deal. Kala licks her hand and extends it.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer licks his hand and takes Kala Kala's hand and shakes firmly.

  • Michael James Watson

She removes a silver card and hands it to you. "This will glow and open when the ritual is ready. I shall had the Masoja at the entrance of this tent when you leave. Shall we agree to deal further after the ritual?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Yes, Kala Kala, that is most agreeable." He takes the silver card and slips it into a hidden pocket in the fold of his Robes. "Until then. Thank you for your services." Realmer bows to her.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Oh, one final question; how long after the ritual before the offspring are produced?"

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt says for Kala, "Instantly"

  • Michael James Watson

Kala-"You may have Gazil and Risik embed in any artifact you wish but i recommend you use them as they are."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Since it is a short-term contract for a short visit, perhaps it would be best to use them as they are. Though I will defer to the counsel of my broker."

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt have to see them but its a 50/50 thing.

  • Michael James Watson

the deal being concluded Jurt leaves and walks back the way he came. Looking into room left and right other deals are being done. Jurt seems to not want to tarry

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer follow Jurt, now that his business is concluded.

  • Michael James Watson

reaching the entrance in the open area to the east is Kala. With here is a pair of creatures. She introduces them as Gazil and Risik


  • Michael James Watson

Jurt nods, looking satisfied. "Well, yes...They will do indeed"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer nods his head as he looks the pair over. "I agree. Gazil. Risik. I am Lord Relmopator of Amber." He bows to the pair.

  • Michael James Watson

Jasra has been unusually quiet, now looks them over with great interest

  • Michael James Watson

Rasik, "Greetings Lord, Command and demand and we shall perform. I walk to a side, Gazil should walk behind. "

  • Michael James Watson

Jasra-"They wear horns of Hendrake. Have you both served a Hendrake Lord?"

  • Michael James Watson

Risik look to Realmer, " Does this traitor serve you? Is it required we speak to her?"

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt laughs. Jasra scowls murder

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer turns to Risik and says, "No, she does not serve me. But we are traveling together. And yes, you do have to answer her questions. Honestly and politely."

  • Michael James Watson

he nods, "Then may i recommend i stand between you and her? And my partner stand behind her? We served the Hellmaid Anahulik, a princess of Hendrake."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"As you see fit to protect and guard me and mine, Risik. And I also accompany Lord Jurt. And the Beholder is my familiar. Now you know who is a part of my circle."

  • Michael James Watson

He nods. She has not spoken...

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Lord Jurt, I believe my business is done here. I am at your leave. Where you lead, I will follow. As you advise, I will heed. These are your peoples and your customs and I am a stranger in a strange land. Let the adventure continue."

  • Michael James Watson

"We cross over"

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt lead the way to the edge of the abyss. There many thousands of people wait as whispies some and go across the Abyss. There are lines and guards and customs people and warriors in guarding positions... Jurt walks past them and aside to the very edge of the abyss, as many of the people watch.. A puffy cloud comes out of the Stuff of Chaos. The guards and spectators realize a Lord summons it. As it reaches the edge Jurt steps out onto it, followed by Jasra. The Dufiro wait for you"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer steps onto the cloud last motioning for the Dufiro to follow. Should the cloud fail to hold Realmer, his Robe does have Flight Capability. (LOL)


Sawall Ways and The Sawalls

  • Michael James Watson

Stepping to the wispy and floating outward over the dark descent of the abyss. Below is a blackness more overwhelming then any deep dungeon or water depth. That is crawls with shadows floating just outside view is unnerving.. Forms, waves, shifts, life and death.. all things lie in the endless hells being crossed over. As the wispy comes over there are senses of pathways leading off in many directions. Some disappearing into the stuff of chaos, others looking like main roads floating in the blackness. Jurt.."I suppose we should make passage through Theldane. The Courts of Chaos capital.. I have been away a long time and there might be question of my loyalty. It will be wise to go to the first gate and kowtow to the Statue of the First Swayvil.....Then we can go to Sawall Way.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer stares into the Abyss and truly lets the magnitude of it register on his mind, his psyche and his soul. He barely hears Jurt, as though he is worlds away. "As you think is best. I have always wanted to visit Theldane and to see even part of it on my first visit would be a treat and an honor. Lead the way, Lord Jurt."

  • Michael James Watson

"Honor.... Let us call it walking the Knife's edge. " Walking up the widest path many people of all descriptions. Chaos forms, animal forms, waves of energy, human forms, dark elvish looking beings. Wagons of different kinds moving along by strange beasts or floating on their own. Jurt is maintaining his human form despite the two Dufiro looking decidedly demonic. Jasra keeps her human form to not attract certain attentions. Jasra-"I never expected to be home again...." Jurt nods in agreement. "Lets just hope they let us leave."

  • Michael James Watson

The great towers of Theldane rise suddenly a distortion of time and distance.. the great artifice of millions of years, its antiquity written deep in every line. Entering the path to the main entrance Jurt stops, eyeing the guards on either side. Squads of horrible warrior abyssal demons and creatures of no solid description. Jurt..."Ah fuck....Oh well. can't stop now...."

  • Michael James Watson

A shape separates from the guards floating towards the group of you.


  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer allows his Guards to guard him, but he is also ready to take action if needed.

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt stops, as it speaks," Lord Jurt, Your presence was noted in the Fane of Zilla. Your father has sent me to escort you to Sawall Way if you chose to ignore his many summons even unto the gates of Castle Amber." Jurt nods, "Gilsar, I have come specifically to speak to father. I shall make my obeisance to the Swayvil then proceed their directly. " Gilsar, "Good. I can have my company escort your slaves and have them placed in the pens until you arrive." The Dufiro bristle but remain calm. Jurt, 'Gilsar, You serve my father and through him, me. Go tell him i come and leave my companions to attend me as is their choice. Now.. GO!! Take your scavengers and Flee before i feed you to the Abyss and make apologies to my father for your destruction!"

  • Michael James Watson

the creature flees as if burned.. A group detaches from the Theldane guard to follow him

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer looks indignant and offended by the creature thinking, and calling, him, a Lord of Amber, a slave. The look on Realmer's face surely shows his irritation... his face may have even 'distorted' a bit towards his Chaos Form (Nosferatu) before he regained his calm at the offense. "Looks and sounds like your father really wants to speak with you, Jurt. And that his servants are more interested in getting you to him and less concerned with offending those with you. Is this the way of Chaos?" Realmer does sound irritated, but not with Jurt and his question sounds more sincere and less snide.

  • Michael James Watson

"Its not uncommon. Remember that unlike in most of shadow, we are part of the circle of life. You eat what doesn't eat you. Gilsar is a bitch even at the best of times. My father's batman. never liked him. beside serving father he is Mandor's creature more then Merlin, Despil or mine."

  • Michael James Watson

Reaching the central plaza the scene is busy beyond description. Tall towers, people moving, energy in the air.. A massive statue of a demonic form in the center seems to be bowed to, touched, and otherwise revered ass everyone goes about their business. Jurt goes and kneels briefly, putting his head to the base.. Jasra stand, shaking.. Looking at Jurt as he stands,"It was a mistake for me to come here.. I'm not ready to renew my allegiance.. " Jurt nods, "Then its best if you claim my protection. Realmer, you are under my protection. We can go to Sawall way now"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer asks Jurt, "Should I show 'respect' to the statue of the King of Chaos, or might that be misconstrued as me giving my allegiance? I don't wish to look disrespectful."

  • Michael James Watson

"Considering your bloodline it would be considered a petition to open negations of returning to serve Chaos. Be aware that everything we do is seen. "

  • Michael James Watson

Walking out of the central courtyard he chooses a major path, crowded with people.. As time goes on he takes off-ramps smaller and smaller

  • Michael James Watson

In time he stops at an Inn and ha a meal supplied. Light on local delicacies.

  • Michael James Watson

Taking to the paths again them float high and low over the blackness under the red sky turning. Eventually coming to a view into a landed valley with what looks like a thousand massive stacked books. colors and shapes of different block. A gateway shows the entrance. It is flanked by guards as were at Theldane. Gilar stand waiting. A armored human form with him, tall and broad. Jurt stops, "Jasra, Realmer, welcome to Sawall Way"

  • Michael James Watson

entering the grand entrance is a study in organized Chaos. It is clear the Sawalls have been art collector with an elegant eye. Cases of souvenirs and trinkets from many black Zone world . Bookcases adorn reding nooks in many hallways.. Windows look out onto different landscapes. A floating snake approaches and seems to almost bow, "Greeeeetingsssss, dear Jurt.......Welcome home... That my bones were not sucked dry in your absence is a pleasure to this old one." "Calao, it is good to see you.. Its been many turnings. Do your eggs still taste of fire?" It chuckles, "I still cook....yes...Though your father takes little more then gravy these days.. He awaits within" Jurt rubs a fond hand on the floating snake as it paces beside him. "These are companions of mine. Jasra and Realmapator." IT floats looking in regard.."Jasra we know, do we not little handmaiden? you have grown tall, and fat, and ripe for the eating" Jasra scowls slightly, "You look delicious as well old one. I do not come here as a servant anymore though." Calao spins and writhes as if laughing. "We will see about that, handmaid"

  • Michael James Watson

It floats near Realmer, sniffing the air with its tri-forked tounge. "Bariman blood... but not close kin.. Curious..Well met, chaosian get. " Jurt walks pat guards and guarding armor down long twisting corridors to come to a grand open space. Seating groups are spread about chaotically. A grand fireplace fills one wall with raising fire. Near it is a lounging bed with a still emaciated form resting upon it. He is attended by a mall coweled figure. Filling a glass. THe figure leans up, pulling pillows behind it. "My son.... you have inded come. Gilsar said you met in Theldane but he doubted you would come.. I knew you would.. Come close.. " Jurt come nearer, motioning for Realmer and Jasra to stay a few feet back. "Father...how could i cross the Abyss and not come to see you..."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer follows Jurt through Sawall Ways looking at everything he can, but touching nothing. When Calao addresses Realmer he will nod his head to the serpent and reply: "Well met, Calao. Of Barimen blood indeed; I am a grandson of Dworkin Barimen, but not a son of Oberon. And I am certainly not good eating." Realmer smiles at the serpent then follows Jurt as he leads the way. When they reach the room with the man on the lounging bed, he already knows to stay a respectful distance behind Lord Jurt and to keep his mouth closed until asked to speak. When Jurt motions for he and Jasra to stay back, Realmer simply stays at Jasra's side and moves only when she does.

  • Michael James Watson

Calao-"Oh, Bariman Lord, do not fear. I am sure you are very tasty. If you wish to know i am sure i could prepare a lovely dish from a shank or arm or leg. You would certainly regrow it. It would make a lovely main course for a family dinner." rt chuckles, looking to Realmer..."He's joking.. I think"

  • Michael James Watson

The red robed figure turns, "OH I can easily imagine you crossing the abyss and not visiting your family little wolf. At least we hear from Despil in official dispatches" The figure drops its hood, revealing a red haired young woman in human form, She walks toward Jurt. "Come give your mother a kiss." Jurt gives his mother a brief kiss. She looks over his shoulder. Jasra looks stiff, trying to look formal.. "Sweet little Jassy.... Its been ages since you served in this hall. You have done well it seems after failing me so miserably. Walking toward Realmer, looking him over carefully.. And who is this, my son? A heir to Bariman.."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer smiles pleasantly then bows to Jurt's mother but keeps himself wary. "Highness; an unexpected pleasure. I am Lord Relmopator of Amber. Grandson of Dworkin and Verna, Son of Satura and Hagalta. As to me being the Heir to anything, I would find it unlikely... except, perhaps, in Adagalasck." Realmer bows again and continues smiling politely.

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt "We didn't come to contest what shambles the Bariman Way is. I would guess Maylon brewed enough Amberites to claim it herself. We came for a more pressing matter. Have you spoken to Mandor recently, father?"

  • Michael James Watson

Gramble-"Bring the young Amberite over, Son"

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt turns, waves for you to come to his bedside

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer moves to the bedside and bows respectfully.

  • Michael James Watson

Gramble-"I'm Gramble Sawall. It is interesting to me to meet an heir of Dworkin not of Oberon's git. My father was close kin to Dworkin. His rebellion, if it was that, was a hard thing. And the monster he made with the Unicorn was the greatest foe of Chaos save Hariswiee the Wise. Would you think it treason that in a place where all things walk that a Lord such as I would wish to see Chaos defied?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Majesty, it is not for me to determine what is treason and what is not, especially in a Realm I am unfamiliar with. And it would seem to me that treason is a matter of perspective and time; treasonous acts of centuries gone by may be the foundation of a prosperous society today. And to defy chaos, in a general sense, happens to even the most chaotic of peoples... as does defying order by the orderly. But this is just my opinion and based on my limited experiences in Amber and my more extensive experiences in Shadow, Majesty." Realmer bows again to Gramble Sawall.

  • Michael James Watson

grambe coughs, with Dara putting a straw to his lips "An elegant deflection.. Would it surprise you to learn i was an old rebel myself?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"No, Majesty; it would not. Many Rulers and Leaders are considered 'rebels' by many... at one time or another."

  • Michael James Watson

"I married a creature of the Maylon line of amberites. Having failed to breed a son for the King of Amber, that being Corwin, She was bound for the slaveblocks as a failed experiment. Her mother had been a mighty warrior but Dara was more the sorceress. And magicians are a glut on the lave market. But she had lovely hips and a certain sexual enthusiasm born from a desire not to end in the cook pots im sure. " Dara chuckles, "You had a nice set of horns on you you old fiend"

  • Michael James Watson

"She bore me two sons. Despil and this one. While they are the children of my dotage i adore them after my fashion... But they both failed me as well. " Jurt whispers, "So glad i came home Mother. " Gramble-"I have spoken to Maylon. Do you know her?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"No, Majesty." Realmer replies politely.

  • Michael James Watson

"She is an archvillian to be sure. A treasured patriot of Chaos. She managed the Benedict/Lintra project after its creator died"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"I believe I read that somewhere in a tome within the Library at Castle Amber, Majesty.... or perhaps I overheard somebody talking about it in the Library.... Majesty."

  • Michael James Watson

" She was raised by Darnuthas rasaka afuras, a minor lord of Chaos and a confidant of Lintra's. She was raised in a realm with a potent artifact that according to Lord Darnu an Amberite was needed to break the seal and claim it. She tried and failed. By the time she was old enough to attempt it Darnu had taken two of her sisters into shadow where he was eventually destroyed, mostly. So Maylon continued the project. She bore two children. Both of whom failed to open the seal. One was brain-damaged beyond healing. The other, Voya, failed but became a mighty hellmaiden, she was the mother of my dear dangerous wife. Dara also failed to break the seal. The other daughter of Maylon, became a ghola tank and breed 3 true amberite offspring, two of whom, after failing, were turned into ghola tanks as well. The third was disposed of in the depths of Hendrake only to emerge and to the best of my knowladge is a piano player somewhere in shadow. His name was Vek, who also failed to break the seal.. The Two tanks each breed one true amberite before the program was discovered and destroyed. One is Gilva, the other is Shaz Far, a new rebel himself now in service to Amber. Dara bore me two children both of whom failed..ITs believed the line of Benedict, beng doomed, can not unseal the artifact. "

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt frowns, thinking of himself as a breeding project. "So you need a Chaoian of the line of Dworkin but not Benedict? You may be in luck. Have you spoken to Mandor recently?"

  • Michael James Watson

Gramble ignores Jurt, speaking to Realmer. "Its believed any of the line of Oberon might fail. Bleys, and brand and Fiona all failed as well. "

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt looks at Realmer-"Well, to bad for Henry, eh?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"So, you are looking for a descendant of Dworkin, but not a descendant of Oberon... and I would bet, not any of the Unicorn Lineage. And here I am, grandson of Dworkin and not of the Unicorn Lineage, and so you seek to intrigue me with bits of Chaosian history, hoping to entice me to ask more and perhaps become involved. Well, Majesty, I am intrigued and enticed... to know more, for certain. But anymore than that I cannot promise."

  • Michael James Watson

Gramble-"If the line of Oberon is suspect, that leaves the line of Satura and the line of Hagalta and the line of Vincent, does it not? If you are not interested there is your mother and father, might either of them be interested? The line of vincent seems immune to research"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"I know nothing of the line of Vincent, Majesty. But as far as my mother and father are concerned; I am sure my mother would reject it as she seems to have no aspirations of power... at least at this time. And my father is treacherous and brutish; I would not suggest any alliances with him; ever. That is my only counsel on those matters, Majesty. But I am certainly open to hear more, if I may, Majesty."

  • Michael James Watson

Dara steps up to Jurt, whispers, 'Who is Henry?" Jurt look at her, "Ask him" pointing to Realmer. He turns and walks quickly from the room, gripping Jasra and pulling her behind himm hard. She stubmbles in surprise and rights herself to follow. The dufiro are ignored by Gramble and Dara, as is the custom

  • Michael James Watson

Gramble-'The artifact is one of great spirally powers. It creates something of a whirlpool in the stuff of chaos. those living on the land it is in do not notice the spin but from outside it is easy to see. The land is a mighty rock others have tried to destroy to no avail"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Forgive me, Majesty, but it seems I have offended your son. A situation I find untenable and a breach of trust I must remedy. With your leave, Majesty, Highness, I must request leave of your presence to pursue your son and correct my error." Realmer bows to the two of them and backs away three steps then bows again... then pauses to see if he is being dismissed or if he is about to make another offense by leaving in order to correct a previous offense.

  • Michael James Watson

Gramble seems to have forgotten you were there.. Dara steps up, gripping your shoulder lightly and walking you out of the room. Dare-"Who is Henry?'

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Son of Mandor of Chaos and Fiona of Amber. His Trump recently showed up in the Family Deck. I believe it is... one of the reasons Jurt came back and is seeking Mandor, Highness."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer pulls out his Trump Deck box, opens and pulls out Henry's Trump, which happens to be on top since he and Jurt fished them out just recently. Realmer shows the Trump to Dara but does not let her take or touch it. He gives her a good look, then puts it away before a Contact can be made.

  • Michael James Watson

She looks, frowning, "Mandor....and Fiona....interesting.. I hadn't checked my deck recently... Not that i have a functional King Random deck. I had to acquire a non-magical deck as Zilla. Thank you for the information. Jurt has always been a problem child... jeolous of his brothers."

  • Michael James Watson

She lets go of Realmers arm and walks back into Grambles chamber.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer continues until he reaches the next room, going back the way he came, using Bob to help navigate. If he cannot see Jurt and if he believes he is getting lost, he will Trump Jurt... if needed.

  • Michael James Watson

As you twit and turn you are not sure which path he took. The Dufiro of Guard steps up, "lord, the Lord Jurt took the passage third to the left ahead. I can track him as long as he remains in the Way"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Then track, by all means. Take me to Lord Jurt. And thank you for offering the information without being prompted. Very helpful... even thoughtful. Lead on, please."

  • Michael James Watson

He leads on through seveeral twists and turns to a blank wall. Passing through it leads to a messy looking room with a wide variety of toys and tools and bottles.. And picture of merlin shows dagger marks. Jurt is holding a sword in his hands, lookingalong the edge "I should just go in there and hack his fool head off. he didn't even care that after all these year he is a grandfather again.. All he cares about is hi precious artifacts. This way is crammed with useless trash he has collected hoping to one up some lord. Sorry, Realmer, I don't know how long i can stay here"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

When Realmer first enters the room he feels a little nervous seeing Jurt eyeing the edge of a blade. Once the rant begins, he doesn't feel any less nervous, but more confident that Jurt is not about to end his (Realmer's) life. When Realmer speaks he is being totally sincere and his expressions will show it. "No, Jurt, I am the one who is sorry. My curiosity and insatiable thirst for knowledge and power overtook my senses; most importantly, my common sense. I came here to support you during your emotional return home and I got too easily pulled into your family's intrigue. I humbly ask your forgiveness for my error in judgment and my clear violation of our... 'table agreement'. And... if you truly intend to use that sword to decapitate your father, the King of Chaos... then I may have to ask one or both of my Guards to disarm you for my safety; after all, if you kill the king, I pretty sure I will be considered guilty by association and will not be able to get out of here... so, for my piece of mind... would you mind putting the sword down?"

  • Michael James Watson

He levels the sword at Realmer, "Think the sword is the dangerous one here? My father is a ruler of a Great House but our is not in the top 10 for the succession to the Swayvil. The High Lord of Chaos is a creature far beyond my poor ailing father. Just so you know, he ails because he failed an ritual to control that artifact he mentioned. I had forgotten about his obsessio with it. Its why he and my mother are essentially estranged. Finding her here was a surprise. So... permission to fence with your Combat Dufiro?"

  • Michael James Watson

Jasra walks up to Realmer..."May i ask you a personal favor?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"You may ask anything you like, Lady Jasra. As to whether I will do as you want will depend exactly upon what you ask."

  • Michael James Watson

Jasra-"You bear a King Random's deck? Then allow me to transfer through the Zilla Trump. It won't cross the Abyss but it will deliver me to the passage point across from Zilla that we arrived in Chaos at. Ill wait public transportation across and out of Chaos. Call my son Rinaldo and ask him to meet me at Zilla. I don't dare stay in Chaos nd certainly not in this house. I had thought to spend a few days but i think my life is at risk in Dara's house. "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer first addresses Jurt who is still fencing with the air, hopefully. "Yes, Jurt, you may spar with my Guards, but please, don't kill, maim or seriously harm each other." Then Realmer nods to the Dufiro before turning his attention back to Jasra. "I will grant your favor, Lady Jasra" Realmer says as he draws out his Deck and begins shuffling through them, "but one day in the future, you will need to repay the favor." Realmer stops when he finds the card in question and he immediately begins making contact. Once established, he extends his hand to Lady Jasra. "I will contact Rinaldo as soon as you pass through."

  • Michael James Watson

She nods, knowing the score when she asked for the favor. Stepping through the portal. Jurt moves a head cut passage to a low line thrust, blocked by the Dufiro of Combat. Looking up, he suddenly laughs.. "Fled has she? I'm surprised she stayed with us this long. Of course i had made it clear what my intentions toward her were going to be later tonight."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Well, she mentioned needing a favor, and I love gathering favors... never know when one might be needed." Realmer winks at Jurt and looks for something to drink or smoke. If nothing is sitting out, Realmer will pull something from his private stash out of his Robe of Many Pockets. "Hope you don't mind. So... any idea how long you do intend to stick around? Planning on seeking out Mandor?"

  • Michael James Watson

"Seeking out Mandor? Well, seeking him out would mean leaving Chaos.. Im not sure what more there is here. I had thought father would claim he had known all along. Or that he would be angered by the exclusion... He is usually ... But no. Henry does not fit his obsession any more then I do... But....since i am here i intend to gather a few things i left behind. " He salutes the Combat D. Slides the sword into a scabbard... Walking to a chest of angularity awkward drawers he with draws a box and puts on a medallion with the symbol of house Sawall. He removes several items of clothes dropping them into his holding bag. Followed by several tomes from a stack. Walking out of the room he waves for you to follow

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

As they are leaving the room, Realmer sorts out Rinaldo's Trump and gives him a call.

  • Michael James Watson

Walking down a long series of confusing switchbacks left and right. Falling through sinking floors and slipping around complicated passages. The Guard looks unhappy and uncertain, its blade drawn. Eventually he comes to a large flat wall. Flanked by Abyssal Demons. 2 on each side. He draws his blade and launches at the ones on the left side of the wall.

  • Michael James Watson

the two on the other side advance on Realmer. The Guard D moves to parry their attacks, splitting them as his partner advances to cross blades

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer brings up the Pattern as a Defense in front of him and he release the lynchpin on a Bodily Defense Spell meant to protect against all forms of Invasive Powers. Bob the Beholder unleashes, at Realmer's mental command, a Hung Spell; Strength Drain on the Abyssal Demon closest to Realmer. Realmer's wand appears in his right hand, red Mandalay Stone still held within the wand's butt end.

  • Michael James Watson

The Guard attempts to block you from physical combat giving time for magiic. the Combat slays hers and looks to see Jurt slay one. Stepping behind to your left she steps inbetween Jurt and Reamer, slicing a blade down the back of one of the ones Jurt is battling before turning to see if you cat spells, not wanting to step in the way

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer releases a Hung Spell from the Pattern, a Forked Lightning Bolt. He is trying to strike the remaining two of them and will fork the bolt around Jurt or a Dufiro if needed. The Bone Wand named Hex, an attack based sentient Artifact, releases a Giants Slap Spell upon same two the Lightning Bolt struck, if they are close enough together, attempting to knock them flat to the ground.

  • Michael James Watson

The combination of spell damage and blade work cause them to fade into ether. The dufiro kneel and start cleaning the blood from the ground, careful not to touch any themselves. Jurt nod, "Good work. Quickly done." Stepping up he places the medallion on the wall and it opens. Stepping inside there are two racks of exquisite swords. One rack with a pair of matched blades looking very much like chaosian katanas. He grabs them, and slides them into his belt. To the left are two book cases filled with ornate leather tombs. To the right are several coronets, and a dozen different medallions hanging on silver hooks. Around the ground are 12 different chests. On a free standing stand is a large blue glowing uncut stone

  • Michael James Watson

Pulling out two bags, snapping them, they open with a mouth 3' wide each and float at waist level.

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt-"Take it all."

  • Michael James Watson

He steps to the tomes and starts pitching them into a bag

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer decides to stay out of this, directly, but to help his friend, indirectly. "Gazil, Risik, help Lord Jurt load his bag, please. Bob and I will stand watch." Realmer and Bob the Beholder stand watch.

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt laughs...The Dufiro stand guard and ready for combat "Wont be that easy. You didn't hire Masoja of Strength in order to help pick things up. Get in here and start loading before the abyssal we dispatched get back to their transport stones. We have about 4 minutes till they get there and summon the rest of the abyssal in this living mausoleum. Now!!! Hurruy!!!"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer has the Bone Wand become a four armed skeletal monkey that jumps into the closet and begins tossing anything it can grab into the open bag. Bob decides to help, since the Dufiro have the watching under control, so he floats over to the closet and uses his Beholder Eye Stalk Telekinetic Ray (if it works here) to move things into the bag. If the Ray does not work, Bob will Shape Shift his eye stalks into tentacles and start grabbing things and tossing them into the bag. "Way faster than I could do. Keep up the good work, boys." Realmer says to his Familiar and his Artifact. "Is that helping, Jurt?"

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt nods, "It'll hold up in court. Damn,, i knew these boxes were heavy. " with the monkey ad bob helping the room is emptied in only a couple minutes.. Standing, stepping out of the vault. Jurt pulls a trump deck out, withdrawing a card he opens a portal. The lnd across the gate is black & white. Windswept and icy cold looking. A dark forest in the distance. "All through!!!"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer moves through quickly, grabbing the bone monkey and Bob to make sure they are with him... he will let the Dufiro worry about the Dufiro.

  • Michael James Watson

The Dufiro move in lockstep around realmer. JUrt steps through and closes the gate, He immediately starts giggling.. Riffling through his trumps he withdraws the next one. Opening the gate. "Pattern trumps won't cross the abyss but Logrus ones will to black zone border realms. But we need distance now. On through. Home again, Home again"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer looks to the Dufiro and says, "Since we are leaving the Realms of Chaos our contract is completed, for now. I have the silver card Kala Kala gave me; summon me when you are ready. And please give Kala Kala my regards and that I will not be able to bargain with her as soon as I had hoped."

  • Michael James Watson

He nods, "Its your choice. My portal is to Thin Whip's Place in the City of Amber. You might as well come with me and get as far away as possible. We are in a black zone realm and using a pattern trump here will be like carving a statue of yourself. Realm Lords will know you are here the second you engage the trump. Feel free to be pissed at me but by the unicorn's 3rd teat, lets have that argument far from here. Get through the portal."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer has said his piece to the Dufiro and he steps through.

  • Michael James Watson

Guard. "Service Rendered. Battle Done. Contract Complete." He hands you a silver stone. the Dof C leans up and slips a silver stone to the guard who includes it with his. "Should you wish our services again, these will tell any broker who we are. We can make our way from here. We will speak to KalaKala. " They turn and start moving fast to the north.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

After receiving the silver stones, Realmer slips them into a pocket within his robes and then steps through the open portal.

  • Michael James Watson

Arriving in the second floor of Thin Whips among pool tables and benches.. Walking to a door way, waving to people, in the room is an office with a couple tables and a desk. The place is disorderly and not very clean but it feels magically secure.

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt-"Well, i think my fealty to Chaos is pretty well screwed. Maybe i better talk to Random now.. Accept his offer.. ah.. for the record, i did not intend to to that crossing over"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"So it was not your plan from the beginning? To pilfer from your family? It was just a spur of the moment type thing? And yes, perhaps we should both talk to Random, though for separate reasons. I need a drink. Got any of your famous tequila handy?"

  • Michael James Watson

he nods, pulling a bottle from the desk.. pouring into two surprisingly clean glasses.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"We should probably also check on your wife, my pet and the resurrected girl."

  • Michael James Watson

"Well, i had it planned. Centuries ago. As a kid. I kyped one of dad's Lord's Medalions when he thought he had lost it and i later found it. And of course i had been in the vault. Stored stuff over the years. Some of the stuff we grabbed was really mine.. A couple chests. a few tomes.. But i never thought i would take them out of Chaos.. Now they are here. I'll tell you what....Im keeping the tomes here. You can peruse them at your leisure.."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"That sounds like an offer I will gladly take you up on." Realmer grabs one of the glasses and tosses down the entire contents with a slight shudder then sets the glass on the desk and reaches for the bottle and refills his glass. "Helluva day. And I still have to go back... sort of. Dufiro mating ritual." Realmer toasts with his glass then takes a swig.

  • Michael James Watson
  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr. he nods.."tricky... but doable. Contact KalaKala and see if they are willing to perform the ritual a bit east of where they expected...Its not a terrible explosive ritual. i bet we could arrange it for one of the Tombs uphill from here and they would love it. Oh.....damn...."

He is clearly blocking a trump. "Well, this is going to take some time. they are going to call back. Do yourself a favor. Find a nice fast time rest, maybe block trump contacts for awhile. Whoever is calling is on a Logrus trump and in time they won't take no for an answer. When it comes to it, I'll take all the blame. Wouldn't be any fun being a villian if i didn't get all the credit."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer takes Jurt's advice and decides to head to his one of his Personal Shadows, the one within the Adagalasck Sway... but before he does he asks Jurt for one last thing. "Before we part... any chance you'd part with some of your blood? Perhaps I can get a jump on those Beholders you wanted."

  • Michael James Watson
  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr. Jurt laughs. "Sure! Take a pint! Make all the bane weapons you like! I'm rethinking the whole beholder project anyway. I've new priorities."
  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Well then, if you're rethinking the Beholder project then I really won't be needing your blood. I will take my leave for now. I will be in touch." Realmer uses a special teleport spell hung on the spiral of the Four Winds to take him to his personal Shadow called Adagaar. Once there, Realmer tweaks the time flow and speed things up considerably so that he can get several days of rest but only a few minutes will have passed in Amber.


Treasures and a Shard of Paragon

  • Michael James Watson

In a land with an extended timeline a dozen trump calls in Amber might all feel like they arrive at once. After a day in shadow a massive barrage of Trumps calls slam into Realmer. His trump skill lets him feel them coming in on Pattern and Adagalasck inscription frequencies. They ping on him in a group, then filter off to ping one at a time after a couple days.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

After Realmer is well rested and has re-hung his cast spells, including those hung in his Artifacts and Familiar, he then begins 'playing' with the Mandalay Stones to become more familiar with them. He does this while he awaits the Trumps calls that are sure to come. Realmer speculates with Bob as to who called and who will be the first to call next. "So Bob, I know you're always tuned in to any Trump Contacts I make or receive... so, have you any idea who tried to contact me? I could tell that most were Amber based Trumps, but at least one was of Adagalasck. Speculate with me while we wait." [Bob has Extraordinary Psychic Sense and Powered by Trump]

  • Michael James Watson

Bob- "The number of trump artists in Adagalasck is small, but Nina and Emilie might have made trumps for Julian, Caine and Trualta reasonably. Beyond them its hard to say. As for Amber trumps, i feel a sense some contacts are weak, others strong. The strong ones might me sorcerers or notable lords. The weak ones might be any family member. I hear you blocking them. In time you will have to answer one. I suggest you reason who you want to speak to concerning the trip west and make the call yourself.

  • Michael James Watson

bob-"I also suspect considering the time, Jurt may be among the calls.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer fiddles with the Stones dexterously (think Goblin King and the crystal balls from Labyrinth) while he considers for a few minutes who he really needs and wants to speak to... he reasons that King Random should be the first and draws out his Trump with one hand while still fiddling with the Stones in the other. He concentrates on the Trump an the Stones at the same time, to test their Trump Boosting Effect.

  • Michael James Watson

Carly, Random's Trump secretary answers. "Lord Relmopator, his majesty is currently in the Library and told me to relay you to him if you should call. I'll put you through." Moments later Random appears on the card. He puts up a finger for one minutes. Then "Ok, before you say a word, come across. I'm in the library and we won't be disturbed. "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer steps through into the Library, bringing Bob with him, still fiddling with the Stones.

  • Michael James Watson

Waiting in the library are Random, Arlo and Bleys. They are looking over maps as well as several law books. Ran-"Well, i got quite a nasty note an hour ago from the Ambassador of Chaos. Perhaps you would like to tell me why A Lord of Chaos is demanding the extradition of his son, who is in self exile and refusing my trump calls., and my cousin who was refusing my trump calls till a few moments ago? Any ideas? Theories? Recipes?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer debates playing dumb, but decides better of and and comes clean... mostly. "Majesty, in the matter of the Lord of Chaos' son, I am sure you are referring to Jurt and the reason is because Jurt raided a closet in Sawall Ways full of trinkets and heirlooms, and I am not entirely sure all of the contents were his. And since I was with Jurt at the time of his visit to Sawall Ways, I am sure the Lord of Chaos in question assumes I am guilty as well; even if by simple association. And I was not actively blocking your contacts, Majesty; I was in a fast time Shadow resting up from my jaunt to the Fane of Zilla and Sawall Ways. I only woke and refreshed a few hours ago, my time. You were the first I contacted."

  • Michael James Watson

Arlo and Bleys look at each other, eventually Arlo shrugs. Arlo-"Was one of them a large blue stone... like a heart crystallized in sapphire? "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"I do believe I did see such a bauble in the closet, but as to whether Jurt took it or not, I am unsure. Once I realized what Jurt was about, I decided it best that I not be directly involved, so I turned a blind eye to what exactly he was taking and instead watched the hallway until we hastily departed via one of his Trumps, taking us to somewhere in the Black Zone, then a Trump taking us to Thin Whips, where we parted. I went to a personal Shadow to rest up, I have no idea what became of Jurt after that."

  • Michael James Watson

Random looks at Bleys-"Well, you know the place. Do we raid it? Think Jurt would answer a trump long enough for you to zorch him?" Bleys-"While i'm certain i could zap him hard over Trump i doubt he is answering. As for raiding Thin Whip's Place...that's unlikely to get the jewel.. Realmer, he took blades. 38 of them. A matched pair of long curved war blades, 12 wide bladed broad swords with a flat edged tip. 24 thin long swords. Did you see him take those? and don't tell me you were just the look out. We are 50/50 to turning Jurt over to them and about 20/80 turning you over to them. Was anyone else present?" Arlo-"oh be real. We are not turning Realmer over to them no matter what they say and telling him that's on the table is just foolish. If Jurt escapes Amber we can claim ignorance of his location. But Random, if he got what they say he got, and Realmer can confirm it, i repeat my suggestion that we have Realmer bring Jurt in and we swear him to fealty. Tell Chaos we will be there soon enough and will discuss it in person." Random frowns, "With a million military advisors and a deck of family members. That looks like a war party to me." Bleys, "Not at all. they know our plan. Its just a good bargaining position in case they get pissy. Besides, its not the Courts of Chaos we would be fighting. Its House Sawall. And frankly, we have Sawall's crown prince's son downstairs as a ...guest. We just need to know what the deal is with what Jurt took. "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer first looks to Arlo and gives him a nod of thanks, then he turns to Bleys and replies. "Yes, I did see many blades; the first two he grabbed was a matched set of katanas which he slipped under his belt. Then next he began pitching tomes from a bookcase in his open bags... it was about then I decided it best not to pilfer from a House of Chaos nor to see what was being pilfered or rightfully taken by a member of said House... Jurt did have a 'key' to the closet, he did not force his way in." Realmer pauses a moment before continuing. "As for bringing Jurt in; I do not want to bring him into an ambush nor bring him in if he does not wish to. But... he did mention contacting you, Majesty, and something about possibly accepting your offer. And as far as raiding Thin Whips... I am sure neither he nor his treasures are there; since I was the last to see him, and he knows I would be questioned about his whereabouts, I'm confident he has already left the area." "And Lord Henry is here? In Amber? Odd. That is what spawned Jurt's trip to the Courts and my accompanying him; he saw Henry's Trump in the King Random Deck and suddenly felt the need to visit home and talk to family members."

  • Michael James Watson

Bleys snorts, "I bet he did. Quite a inquisitive fellow. I had to toss him up against a wall just this morning. Training of course, in magical arts. Mandor and Fiona didn't just hide him from Amber but from Chaos. They were quite serious even going so far as to be married by Ygg, to establish a legitimate marriage, certainly for magical purposes. He was raised in Antheris with its 3 to 1 time ratio. Id say Henry is about 22... real years.. So an egg. And whats more Elyene, Flora's daughter, has known about him since birth. So there was a lot of deception going on." Arlo nod, "A son of the Heir of Sawall would have to have been anointed in chaos a lot of times by now and im sure it wasn't done once. He holds a woven Logrus... " Ran-"Well, Realmer, I'm sure you are right about him moving the new toys.. What do you say about going and bringing him around. Nothing formal. I'll be here in the library.. It needs to be now. Trump him or visit him.. "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Yes, Majesty. But I do not know where he is or where he might be hiding. And I am fairly confident he will not answer any Pattern or Logrus based Trump calls...." Realmer trails off and remains silent for a moment, then smiles. "But... I do know a Trump discipline involving the Spiral of the Four Winds that might work. Give me a bit of time and privacy to try it. If you will all excuse me." Realmer moves to his favorite niche in the Library, the one Arlo dislikes the most and rarely visits. He pulls out a specially prepared glass globe and begins channeling his Squiggle Power and his Trump Power into the globe to produce a 3D image of Jurt. Once this is accomplished Realmer will attempt contact, using the Mandalay Stones to boost his Psyche and the Trump Transmission itself, if needed.

  • Michael James Watson

The image falters a bit but makes contact.. Jurt's image solidifies looking through his raised Logrus image. It shimmers bright with a unusual blue tinge.. "Realmer! An interesting power aspect... I've not see its like.. Adagalasck? It was the only imprint you had i was unfamiliar with. Are you on the lamb? I an pull you through if you like. I'm sort of in the middle of something but you are welcome to observe"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Yes, it is based on the Spiral of the Four Winds. I figured you wouldn't respond to any Pattern or Logrus based Trump calls so I thought I would try something completely different. I figured either you knew about my Imprint and would recognize the Contact or would find the Imprint just unusual enough to answer; either way, I figured I would get through. And no, I am not on the run. I am in the Library of Castle Amber and King Random has requested you come here to visit with him; just a little informal meeting... apparently your father has already contacted him and is asking that the King of Amber extradite us both to the Courts. Random questioned me about what happened; I told him most of it... making you out as the villain, as you suggested, and kept myself as innocent as possible. Are you willing to come through to me? Other than myself and Random, only Bleys and Arloxedra are present. They are all in another part of the Library presently... I am currently alone in a little used niche."

  • Michael James Watson

"Bleys and Arlo...double tough. Ok... Look. tell them ill talk to them but i need to talk to your her at my place first. This Trump is odd. Can you transport with it? If so, come to me. "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Yes, I can transport through it. Give me a moment." Realmer turns away from the glass globe a bit, but not enough to break contact. He raises his voice enough that Random and group will hear him. "Majesty, I have contacted Jurt and he is willing to talk to you, but requests my counsel first and that I go to him now. I will be contacting you as soon as I can, and hopefully, and most likely, Lord Jurt will be accompanying me... willingly." Realmer smiles a wicked smile and looks back to Jurt and winks at him. Realmer waits a few moments for a reply, if any comes, but does not wait long. Realmer gestures silently to Bob for him to remain behind, listen and wait, then transports to Jurt.

  • Michael James Watson

ran-"Alright. But make it clear I'm holding to coming here. I won't wait long. "

  • Michael James Watson

Arriving in a flat stone plain under a green sky. He has several folding tables and several of the chests you saw him toss in the bags. Some tables have tomes on them. Others have chests that look like they were unpacked and the tables hear them have a wide variety of boxes and tomes. His sorting seems to be by container. The swords are on another table, 12 each. Looking around the otherwise empty plain you see the blue stone sitting about a hundred yards away.. He has both katanas in his belt. Jurt _"So..Gramble already complained to Random? How much trouble are we in?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Well.... Arloxedra came to my defense and said I would not be extradited, so I think I'm in little to no trouble." Realmer looks over the things spread out on the tables and then looks over to the sapphire then back to Jurt. "How much trouble you're in, in Amber, will depend upon exactly what you acquired, what you intend to do with it and who you intend to share it with, and how soon you are willing to meet with King Random. He did want me to tell you that he is currently waiting on you and will not wait long... I sure hope this is a fast-time shadow compared to Amber." "I told him I saw the katanas you bear and that you bear them, I told him I saw you piling tomes into the bags... and that I saw THAT blue stone but was not sure if you had taken it. I tried to be vague but not too vague."

  • Michael James Watson

jurt nods finishing a drink and stepping over to the swords. "These are treasures of House Sawall. Ancient, everyone. Tomes of rare Dufiro. Histories of secret learnings. Blueprints for the creation of Sawall Way.. Abyssal stones, focuses.. odd weapons.. The swords.. these 24 are called Defender blades. They jump up and defend you if you are attacked by someone with weapons. These 12 at Excavation Blade, grisly weapons; dig a hole with them and you can carve a grave in a singe swipe, hit someone in the chest and nothing remains above the nipples. " He picks up a defender and an excavation blade, setting them on the table with the bottles and the folding chairs. "These are your cut. The rest are a bit hard to describe and i suspect ill be giving them back anyway.. The Tomes, ill keep those till Despil asks for them, the stodgy prig. " Patting the blades on his belt. "I will only give to Mandor. And he knows if he takes them he is the ruler of Sawall and he can send Gramble off to his final reward. The grumpy old prick ha been dying for centuries anyway. " He steps out to from the tables. "But that, " pointing at the stone, "is the thing they are pissed about. And ill use it now to attune these blades, and a few of the trinkets on my person to myself. Afterwards, ill decide if they can have it back. Once im done, call Arlo and we'll go talk to them, ok?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer looks over the horde of treasures again then looks over 'his cut' then says, "I'm not sure King Random will let me keep any of this, but I do appreciate the offer. And instead of Arloxedra, I have Bob waiting for my call; I left him behind to eavesdrop and bring us back... or just me if circumstances dictate. So do what you must, but do it quickly, by Amber's time that is, I really don't want an angry call from Random... in fact, I would rather be on the King's good side as I need some permissions from him to do what I want to do before leaving on his Long Walk... if I'm still going, that is." Realmer chuckles and adds, "It seems your reputation for trouble is accurate and earned. I look forward to more 'troublesome times' with you." Realmer smiles at Jurt, and though he never said the word itself, it was as though he ended his last sentence with the word 'friend'.

  • Michael James Watson

Jrt laughs walking toward the Blue Stone. "You don't really have a choice on those sword. I passed them to you. Leave them here if you like and ill store them away but they will come when you call them even from that vault we stole them from. Now, the stone is the thing. A Great House in Chaos is a "great" house if it has one of those stones. If it became public knowledge it was stolen and missing they would be ousted from a dozen councils and removed from the order of succession in Chaos. Despite stealing all that other stuff if rumor this stone was missing from Sawall Way Gramble would have to swear he gave the stone into my keeping rather then admit i niced it. And if you crossed the Abyss with it in your hand, someone from Theldane would show up to ask you what the name of your house is and would you like the old Sawall's spots on royal councils. With that stone you could reclaim Bariman Way. interesting,eh?" Waving a hand and speaking as he walks.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer takes the two swords in question and puts each in an outer side pocket of his Robe of Many Deep Pockets then looks to the bottles sitting on the same table as the swords. "Well, were I interested in that much power, responsibility and headache, I would snatch the stone now and head to the Courts of Chaos... but that is not my ambition. Perhaps that is why King Random wishes to speak with you so badly and as soon as possible... that stone was the first thing I was asked about. Oh, and the bottles? Are they a part of my cut, and if so, what are they... specifically?"

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt-"Oh those bottles? Red Tequila. 175 proof. Stuff will kill stomach bacteria. Take one. They are endlessly refilling. The secret of my house tequila is mixing that stuff with cream soda and letting it go flat. " Getting to the stone he waves his hand finally. Light emits from the stone. It spreads out across the plain coming within 10 yards of Realmer and finishing as a writhing moving image radiating confusion, power, lust and arrogance. "Behold, The Logrus of Chaos. This shadow of it is the Blue Stone of Sawall. Watch" His shape shifts rapidly as he starts assaying it.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer watches with interest... great interest. He is so intent on studying Jurt that his own body might begin Shape Shifting as Jurt's does, so intent is Realmer's study of Jurt's Assaying of a Logrus that he is unaware of it.

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt shifts as regions around him grow cold and hot. Unlike the the pattern with it rainbow sparkles the Logrus looks like its wrestling with its walker. Fighting them, screwing them. Jurt shifts to energy and demon shapes, humans able to survive in vacuum.. The area outside the logrus is unaffected by the quick changes in environments in the Logrus as it battles with Jurt. Lights show around and above him, Tendril reach out and around looking as if they are seeking something to use against Jurt.. One reaches out coming closer to Realmer as he watches, urging him to run and jump in the middle of the gaping sea of its body the Logrus.

  • Michael James Watson

writhing tendrils of power, light and madness writhe wildly rising to seem a mad square of light like living bloody spaghetti

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer immediately resists the urge to enter the Logrus, fearing for the one still negotiating it; perhaps a reflex from the Pattern, perhaps some other self preservation instinct. Part of him wants to... part of him does not. He resists, his will resolute, for now... he knows he would need to know more first... he resists.

  • Michael James Watson

Once he resists the temptation to leap fades away.. Time passes as the spectacle continues. Visions of monsters and people walking in the light can just be seen.. In time the lights slow and seem to purr...till Jurt steps to the side and exist the lights.. followed almost immediately from the light being sucked jumanji style into the center till it leaves a single large blue stone.. Jurt walks out and picks it up, tossing it up and down one handed as we walks over, looking like a canary eating cat.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Wow! That was spectacular. thank you for allowing me to view it."

  • Michael James Watson

He sets the stone down near you, picking up a bottle and chugging. "Its not as easy as it looks...."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"It didn't look easy at all."

  • Michael James Watson

"Now these blades will work for me, till Mandor asks me for them." Patting the katanas. He waves his hands and the boxes start packing... extra boxes fill with tomes and swords. Taking a big chug from the bottle, and pulling out 3 more. "Did you grab one of those?" Pointing at the stone Red tequila bottles

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Nope, but I'd like to... perhaps two of them? One for myself and one to trade with someone in the future... not sure who yet, but I will know when the time is right."

  • Michael James Watson

"Take One. They are rare enough. I'm going to see if giving a few to Random, Arlo and Bleys will keep them from throwing me in the dungeons. Ok... Open the door"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer takes one bottle and slips it inside one of the many pockets of his Robe. He pulls out his Trump Deck and pulls from the bottom of the Deck a Trump of Bob the Beholder that Realmer made himself. He focuses and waits for contact. Realmer's first question to Bob upon contact: "How long have I been gone?" Realmer's next question to Bob: "What did you hear while I was gone?"

  • Michael James Watson

 Bob--"You've only been gone a couple minutes.. So far though three other people have arrived. And Random told me if i told you who he might put me in a cell of my own"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Well, I have been out-foxed... I should have seen it coming." Realmer replies to Bob then tells Jurt "Three more have arrived and under threat of imprisonment by Random, my Familiar cannot tell me who. Guess we are both in for a surprise. Bob, bring us both through."

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt frowns...."I see... well, this is what they get." Shimmering, the Logrus rises in front of him. He steps into it , reaching his arms into tendrils. Realmer sees him loading spells with a speed that is incredible, as if he is offloading spells onto the frame. He tosses up a defender blade that hovers above him. He draws a Excavation Blade. The Logrus calms to be a slightly visible series of lines surrounding him. "Lets go. He steps up to follow you through.."

  • Michael James Watson

Entering the room the library is open and well lit, the tables moved away. Bleys and Arlo stand with Random. Bleys and Arlo instantly raise the sigil of the pattern. Across the room is Benedict with a pattern blade in his hand. On the top of the close stack is is a dark haired women looking down a devastating looking sniper rifle glowing runes. Besides Random is Viale

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt-”Oh... fuck me..."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer maintains a calm mind and a calm visage. He smiles to the King and bows. "King Random, Lord Jurt, as you asked. Looks at little less informal than before, Majesty. And a bit more like an ambush." Realmer sighs but says no more and does not move away from Jurt's side, but will not follow Jurt if he moves or flees.

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt looks at the red dot on his chest, looking up at the sniper. "Hello Doria... Hows your sister?" Doria, "Desri is fine now. Spoken to Maylon recently?" Jurt snickers... Random..."Jurt.. you asked to swear fealty once and gain the protection of the Kingdom of Amber. Are you ready to swear fealty and submit an article of submission?" Jurt-"Not at gun point. Get my great aunt psychopath off the bookcase and we can talk."

  • Michael James Watson

Doria slides down the case, three stories high. Realmer has never met her. Her reputation is fierce. She cradles the sniper rifle. "Ah, poor Jurt....Scared of a little silver at supersonic speeds?" Jurt looks at Realmer.. wondering...."King random... What are your terms?"

  • Michael James Watson

Random walks forward, looks to Ben who sheathes his sword. Arlo drops his sigil.

  • Michael James Watson

Ran-"Jurt, I can't do anything till you give back the blue stone to Sawall. Despil is at Sea View Gardens... Give the stone to Realmer. He will take it to Sea View nd deliver it to Despil. If you refuse.. well, ill burn thin whip's to the ground and you can run till they catch you. Sorry... But they told me what the stone is and i can't protect you"

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt looks to Realmer

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer looks from face to face, reading the magnitude of the situation, which he was mostly aware of before he left the Library. Then he turns and looks to Jurt and speaks softly to his... friend. "Jurt, I didn't know this was what you would be facing upon arrival. And I will go to great lengths to prove it, if you require. And as far as the Stone... well, you basically offered it to me, so you must not really want it for yourself, so why not give it back and accept King Random's offer. I saw the way your father and mother treated you; preferring the company of a stranger to their own son... so I know you don't really want to go back. And I think you grabbed everything you really wanted before you left." Realmer chuckles and smiles at Jurt with a twinkle in his eye. "What say you, Lord Jurt?"

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt starts to speak but bleys steps up and interupts, Bley-"Before you pass it back to chaos, may we see it? Practitioners of the arts rarely see such wonders.. My oath none of us will try to see it but if it is what Despil says it is, I think we should get a look at it. What say you?"

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt shrugs, looks at Realmer

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer shrugs back to Jurt. "Your call, Jurt. I have seen it and it IS impressive, so I know how the others feel about having this rare opportunity. But again, still your call. If you wish me to deliver it unseen to Despil, that is what I will do. If you care not, let them see it... but 'No Touchy'."

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt nods. Pulling the blue jewel out. Arlo raises his sigil to observe. The stone emanates a sense of nervousness. Putting it on the ground he steps back ordering it to display in the confines of the room. The Logrus manifests. Ben and Doria move together,, Random and Arlo stand together, The Logrus fills the room but keeps its shape small. The lights fill the room. Library staff come at distances and watch. Ran-"They showed me one after Patternfall, but i was too distracted. Doria-"Its the enemy..."

  • Michael James Watson

Bleys leaps in.

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt screams but it is too late.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer does everything he can to stop Bleys, if he can.

  • Michael James Watson

Realmer starts to move but is is too late. Bleys moves quickly, shifting shape with bold powers. The lights and might and powers surround him.

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt steps over to random, blade raised. Ben steps forward, putting his katana against the blade of excavation.

  • Michael James Watson

Random yells, "Jurt! Ill deal with Bleys! He acts against my will!! Lets calm the fuck down for shadow's sake!!!!'

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt looks around, Arlo is smiling..

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt screams in anger and angst and walks off grabbing Realmer by the shoulder and pulling

  • Michael James Watson

jurt leans in to Realmer-"I have to swear to Random..But.. know i will never trust these Amberites"

  • Michael James Watson

in the meantime, Bleys assays the Logrus as someone with the sigil only can.. finishing in the speed one familiar does. Jurt whispers to Realmer, "damn..that was fast.. he has been through the Logrus more then i have...Fucking old lords..Realmer.. I must dare something.. consider going with me."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"You don't have to trust them, and you shouldn't. I don't trust them. I don't trust you. I don't trust anyone. But I did swear fealty to the King of Amber and now you will too, it seems. And yeah, that did seem fast. Wait.. what?"

  • Michael James Watson

jurt looks in, "Bleys had the inscription of the Logrus.. Fiona must, brand must. The old lords must have given it to them before they at the Oracle of Night"

  • Michael James Watson

From around a long corridor, a figure walks out, shedding his deceptive cloaking, a man in red dressing gown watches Bleys assay the Logrus. He moves behind Random, whispering. Realmer sees him recognizing Brand. Bleys finishes the Logrus and steps aside. Jurt drops it immediately. Walking to the stone, picking it up. looking daggers at those in the room. a portrait of betrayal and a cornered tiger. He steps over and offers the stone to Realmer. Leaning in to whisper, "Take the stone and give it to Despil. Before then, cut yourself, bleed on the stone, and heal.. These fuckers need to fear us"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer takes the stone with his left hand and grips it tightly. "Enough! Ambush. Betrayal. Had I known this would happen I would have taken the Stone myself and gone to Theldane to return it. And now, in effect, I shall do so." Realmer heads towards the exit that will get him to Sea View Gardens the quickest.

  • Michael James Watson

Ran_"Bleys you drunk bastard what the hell!??? " Bleys.."Sue me, beat me, fine me.. That was the Stone of Sawall. You frigggin know the oracle foretold i'd walk it. I couldn't pass up the chance." Ben take Bleys to the dungeons. get someone to read him romance novels again..."

  • Michael James Watson

Ran looks at Doria nodding, she exits the library

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer exits the Library. As he does, he grabs the Stone with both hands and slips his hands beneath his sleeves to his the Stone from view and making it easier for him to drop the Stone in a pocket making it harder for someone to take... for a bit. Realmer does not rush, but does not take his time either. He does consider Jurt's request and its possible consequences... he slows a bit in his pace... but continues walking...

  • Michael James Watson

Ben walks to Bleys and grips his arm hard. Bleys look to him. "Totally worth it"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

As Realmer continues on his way, he Shape Shifts a fingernail extra sharp and cuts his other hand with it, allowing the blood to fall upon the Stone... all hidden within the voluminous sleeves of his Robe. Once this is done the Power of the Ring of Satura will Regenerate his wound almost instantly. Realmer will then Shape Shift the fingernail back to normal and after the minor Attunement seems complete, he will shape shift his blood off the stone and his hands back into his body, hiding all evidence of what he has done... hopefully.

  • Michael James Watson

Cutting himself and blooding the stone causes a short burst. The stone emits light briefly, a type of acknowledgment . Arriving at the Sea view garden the normality of it is a bit of a shock. Diners go about their business in the evening light. Flora sees you and nods, pointing toward a table in the area you often use under normal circumstances. a waiter walks up and asks for your preferred meal.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Surf and Turf, I believe I heard it ordered once. Steak rare and all the trimmings. Thank you. And a stout ale to compliment them both." Realmer nods to Flora and heads to the table she pointed out.

  • Michael James Watson

As you sit despil appears as if he was waiting. He sits across from you. Realmer thinks he has rarely seen this chaosain of amber blood accept at family dinners where as ambassador to Amber he at at the head table

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Lord Despil, I don't believe we've ever formally or informally met. I am Lord Relmopator, please call me Realmer. I believe I have something that needs to be returned. Do you wish me to pass it under the table, inconspicuously?"

  • Michael James Watson

Despil smiles, "No.. put it in my hand. anyone here capable of knowing what it is should have the chance to spread really good gossip." He rests his hand on the table, flat"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer smiles a bit wickedly and says, "Well played. I like your style." Reamler pulls out the Stone and casually hands it to Despil, as if he is returning a parcel of herbs (cup of sugar. hahaha).

  • Michael James Watson

Taking the tone and palming it expertly. "You know that Jurt is the youngest child in a mighty house? be careful trusting him. I shall tell other i warned you if his madness envelops you." Sipping his tea, "tell jurt to contact me..He has kicked over a basket of snakes to be sure..I love my brother.. but he is his own worst enemy."

  • Michael James Watson

Despil waves to a waiter who brings a cup and refills Despils as well. The coffee smells strongly of hickory and bacon.

  • Michael James Watson

"A moment..." Taking out a card, he speaks in a guttural harsh language briefly,, looking like he is about to start arguing he puts the trump face down. "I think the annoyance of parents is a universal constant..."

  • Michael James Watson

"Now that Gramble knows i have the stone I'll have to take it there.. I don't trust moving it by trump unless im holding it. Can't just pass it over and be done with it. I dread a return to Chaos though...There... is likely to be ugly politics there now.. While Chaos wouldn't go to war with Amber over Jurt's actions they may blame me for them. "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"I'm not sure how they could possibly put the blame onto you, Lord Despil; you were not there and therefore could not control his actions. _I_ was there, and _I_ couldn't control his actions.... though I am also being blamed, at least in part. And thank you for your counsel on your brother; I know he is prone to trouble and short sighted decisions, and I barely know him. But for some reason, he feels like a brother to me. Not like Amberites and Chaosians use the word brother and all that goes with it... but more like when a normal person says someone is like a brother to them. It is strange, but there it is. I am sorry for my part in all of this. Please send my apologies to your Family and my regrets that I could not better influence their son."

  • Michael James Watson

"Ill drop the 'Lord" if you will.. Hmm Blame..." He withdraws a deck of trump and starts casually shuffling them with one handed passes, a move he hardly seems aware of. Realmer notes its a nervous habit Random shares. Over the years he has seen and probably spoken to Despil but not in detail. Despil was the first and only Ambassador to Amber Chaos ever sent. "I get blamed for Jurt's actions a lot. Always have, in Chaos and here. He is my younger brother but he and I were born soon after Patternfall. Dara married Gramble on the rebound essentially. He had made his interest clear while she was young, in Chaos terms. But She herself had been born during the Black Road war as had her mother and grandmother. Hendrake was deep in the Party for War. And many in Chaos will blame them for eons for such a stunning defeat. Dara married Gramble as much to distance herself from the role she played in Hendrake's games. Jurt and I were the visible symbol of everything that caused Chaos's defeat. its why someone young as I was given this post. I was expendable. Jurt too. Neither of us was missed. We were mostly remember when blame was needed to be placed. Merlin left Chaos, swore to Random at Patternfall so while we saw him a lot growing up in Sawall Way, he got the blame from Jurt for every woe.. It made him bitter and combative. He got over that but it soured him on Chaos.. Not however, on gaining power. "

  • Michael James Watson

"This foolishness now...I'm afraid he has burned the bridge letting him enter Chaos..and i am sure i will be blamed for that a well. If not by Swayvil, certainly by Gramble and Dara. The real shame is that i like it here. In many ways more then in Chaos.. My blood is not as purely Amberite as Merlin's, but I'm afraid i have gone native. I'd like you there when i speak to Jurt. I need to recover as much of the treasures of Sawall as possible."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

As Despil is talking, Realmer displays his own nervous fidget, which he is barely aware of; he has pulled out the Mandalay Stones and is rolling them around in his palm and over the backs of his knuckles in a slow idle fashion with his left hand. With his right he picks up the cup of coffee and takes a sip or two before returning the cup to the table. Realmer nods his head as he listens to Despil's words. "Of course, Despil, I would certainly like to be there with you and him. Though I know you less well than I know Jurt, and I know Merlin not at all, it seems to me that the sons of Dara are not truly welcome in the House of Sawall; I saw how your mother and father treated Jurt first hand when we were there... I can only imagine how much worse it could have been had I not been there." Realmer pauses and takes a sip of coffee before continuing; he is still idly playing with his Mandalay Stones. "And as someone also raised outside of Amber, I must also admit to 'going native'; I like it here as well. Thus far, the benefits of living here and swearing fealty to the King have far outweighed any drawbacks. Including being called into Service for the Crown as an Ambassador, and all that went with it." He smiles at Despil with the knowing smile of shared experiences and headaches. "And if I may ask you a very personal and very bold, yet purely hypothetical, question; if you were in possession of some or all of the 'treasures of Sawall' and in a similar position as myself or Jurt... would you return them? All or in part? And what would be your rationale?" Realmer takes a sip of coffee and watches Despil with interest over the brim of the cup; whether Despil answers the question or not, Realmer may still learn something by his reactions or body language... or since he is playing with the Mandalay Stones, his Psyche could be considerably boosted and he might pick up something without even trying.

  • Michael James Watson

"I suppose in a way i am in that position. You know what i hold. I could devastate House Sawall by declaring it mine. I assume you know the quality of the item i hold. Either Gramble would have to declare me Lord or he would have to hunt me down.. But im not the warrior type. I've always been diplomatic. I learned that standing between Merlin and Jurt. " Looking out over the ocean in the morning cool breeze.. "Look at that... The endless sea the poems of Amber call it because while you can travel that way and eventually come to the kingdoms of Acadia and the Far Isle, but you can also sail into shadow and sail waters for ever. Chaos is like that. I might find a view like this in the stuff of chaos and then it would fade back into the infinite black...There is...something... to the permanence of Order. Of course eldars in Chaos would say Amber is just a thing for a short time as well, if it would all disappear as easily a destroying the pattern.. Fragile.. Some part of me long to defend this place.." Waving the waiter over and ordering peach mimosas.. "Saying that is treason...for me. Some of the old war gods talk of the wars destroying Paragon and Calmir and thought war with Amber would be the same.. Many of those were horrified that Chaos lost at Patternfall. They see that battle as a sign they have grown weak. They long for war...any war"

  • Michael James Watson

'They are considering a war on Azcala and Random knows it. Part of the reason he is going to Chaos with an army. He hopes to convince the Great War Houses to ride against azcala. He may be able to. He is also consider how expensive hiring armies of Dufiro would be. I've researched it for him.." pouring a mimosa when the pitcher arrives. "There are some treasures of Sawall that Jurt took that must go back.. The Blue Stone for sure. There is another that must go back too but i think it might stay in Amber. You know the dungeons here, yes? There are vasty rooms or caverns in them? Below the Pattern level?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer chuckles and smiles when he responds to Despil. "I am quite familiar with the lower levels of Castle Amber, I spend most of my time there when I am here; my laboratory and unofficial apartment are down there. And yes, there are vast rooms and caverns, though I have not visited them all." Realmer takes a sip of coffee then asks a question. "Which other treasures, besides the Stone, must be returned? It would be helpful to know so I can assist, if possible, in their return."

  • Michael James Watson

"Well, Gramble really wants his swords. Its not critical but ownership of the House blades can be inferred to mean house leadership, not unlike the stone, though not as seriously. Gramble can call them stolen but he would lose face. And there is a rock.. about the size of a medium sized dog that no one but a few of us know he has that ought to go back. Its the rock i think I'll keep"

  • Michael James Watson

"But...it needs to be someplace secure. and the nearer the pattern the harder for Chaosians to find it. "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Well, I don't recall seeing the 'rock' you speak of, but I certainly saw a lot of swords; three different sets, to be exact. Two matching katanas, a dozens matching blades and another two dozen matching blades; Jurt wears the matching katanas now... or he did when I left the Library." Realmer sighs as he makes up his mind to tell Despil about 'his cut'. "And I must begrudgingly admit that I possess two swords from the pilfered treasure; an Excavation Blade and a Defender Blade... he said it was my 'cut'. I was reluctant to accept them, but then Jurt told me what they could do and that since he had 'given them to me', that even if they were locked back in the vault they came from in Sawall Ways, I could still summon them to me, so I might as well take them... so I did. I will return them, as it is the proper thing to do. Jurt also gave me a bottle of Red Tequila, which I have no intention of returning; I should get something for my troubles." Realmer smiles and chuckles then finishes his coffee.

  • Michael James Watson

Despil chuckles slightly.."The Red Tequila is his creation. Horrid stuff. The Defenders and Excavations are certainly important but they won't really be missed. Its the katanas that are the Sawall House blades. As for the rock, it wold have been in a well locked wide low case."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Well, he did toss several crates in his bags without looking through the contents... he may have what you are looking for and not realize it. And if it would help grease the wheels in any way for the Blades I possess to go back, I shall return them, but otherwise..." Realmer leaves it hanging. If Despil wants the Blades to go back he can ask for them, if not, Realmer will keep them. "Well, horrid or not, his tequila is powerful and that is what I like about it. That, and the fact that it is NOT wine. I detest wine."

  • Michael James Watson

"I doubt those are matters of concern. And Jurt took nothing without knowing what it was. We opened that vault many times once he found an old Lord's Medallion. Every lord has several, for himself and trusted servants. I am certain he took it.. I want to get the tomes to be sure. Or at least have access to them.. Truth be told the Stone and the House blades are the only thing they will make a sticnk about. the rest is a matter of family business"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Well then, the Stone is already in your possession, the whereabouts of the Katanas is known and I am hopeful the two of us can convince him to return them as well. The rock you may have to bargain for, but I have a feeling he will make a deal of some sort. But we won't know until we talk to him."

  • Michael James Watson

"Agreed. Then lets be about it. Can you find one of those big rooms first? Best place to talk. I'll ask Random if I can use it indefinitely. This opportunity is too good to pass up even if it is a bit of treason"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"I already know of a perfect room; very spacious, high ceiling, arched entrance, but no door. It's located a couple of levels down from my laboratory... I was considering it for a second, or larger lab and apartment... before I went to Adagalasck. I will ask Random if is it still unused and available." Realmer stands, waits for Despil to stand, then leads the way to the Library.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Actually, I'll send Bob to take a look" Realmer adds as they leave the table area. Upon exiting the Library earlier, Bob would have Shifted to the form of a white raven, as most find a beholder unnerving at the least, and it is a standard practice when in civilized places. Bob nods his raven beak up and down then pops out with the rainbow hues of Trump travel.

  • Michael James Watson

Random approves the room use and Jurt and Arlo seem to be talking when you arrive. "So, Despil wants to talk, eh? I bet..Lets go"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer contacts Bob and has him Trump the three of them to his location, the room in question in the dungeons.

  • Michael James Watson

Despil looks around the room first, ignoring Jurt who stands looking annoyed.

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt, "Well? Will it fit?" Despil nods.."Yes. Its suitable. The plan was not to take anything else you know. Now they will know we have the rock. If you had left the other stuff it might have been centuries till they missed it. Now they will inventory everything down to the last silver. Give me the rock" Jurt reaches into the bag and pulls out a flat chest. They set it on the ground and open it. Inside is a chunk of raw rock with a flat bottom, Its covered with a cloth as they pull it out and set it in the middle of the room.

  • Michael James Watson

Despil and Jurt look at the rock, pulling off the cloth. Under it is a bright inscription the size of a paperback. It looks colorful and active, like a book sized piece of the pattern

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

The hairs on the back of Realmer's neck rise up as he brings up the Pattern and is ready to unleash Spells against Jurt and Despil if needed, the Mandalay Stones still in his left hand, but now clutched in his palm, his hand in a fist. Bob and all of Realmer's Artifacts can sense his apprehension and are also at the ready with Spells. "What the FUCK is that!? And what in all Creation are you two co-conspirators doing!?"

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt, "Ah, Realmer... I would really recommend dropping your sigil right now.. This thing is sensitive"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Answer my questions and I will."

  • Michael James Watson

Despil stands, "We have spoken about this for years. But neither of us wanted to risk the reprisals if it was discovered we took this.. Frankly I'm shocked Jurt had the stones to grab what he did. " Jurt sneer, "Everything was just there. It was a crime of oppertunity. They just pissed me off one too many times. I took the rest because they will let us keep this if we give back the stone. Im giving the Swords to Mandor and let him fight it out with Dad. Besides, there are a lot of cool things there.. Go ahead, Despil.

  • Michael James Watson

Despil starts focusing. Jurt, "Realmer, that is a Shard of Paragon. One half of one percent of the inscription of the Primal Realm of Paragon" https://wiki.rpg.net/index.php/Paragon

WIKI.RPG.NET Paragon - RPGnet

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt pulls a rock the size of a golf ball from his pocket. It has the look of a common piece of granite. "I've had this rock for years. A gift from mother. It has a few nice small uses.. "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"So that's a Shard of Paragon. I've read about them and Paragon. Interesting. So why the need to store it here? Have something to do with the proximity of the Pattern? And how do I get in on a piece of this power? Assuming it does not disrupt the Pattern and Amber; I don't want to be involved in starting another Black Road War." Realmer still has not dropped his Sigil of the Pattern and still has hung spells at the tip of his mind.

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt-"Really, drop the frame. It will drop anyway once Despil activates the stone and it will be messy. Yes, its proximity to the pattern. Once this is activated it will be detectable as activated by the powers. Not that they will care overly much. But trying to find it will be hard, even for them. The closer to a major inscription the more likely it won't be found. A searcher could be a in the throne room upstairs and not be able to detect it in the clutter of power emanations the pattern puts out"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"I know I shouldn't trust either of you, but..." Realmer leaves it hanging then lowers the Sigil and sighs heavily. "So, if you're not going to blow the place up or kill me, what can I do and how do I get a piece of this power for myself?"

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt, "We have been in this shard before. Its how we know what it i. And once we have opened it, we can assay the portion of the inscription that's here." The shard glows. Jurt takes his rock and shows it to you. Despil looks and nods. Jurt drops the rock. It falls a foot then makes a right turn and moves fast to slam into the side of the shard. In second it seems to have been absorbed. The room suddenly is filled with light..and it appears like a sunny day in the field of the stone. Like a pocket shadow of a vast open grassy field. In the center is a stoa surrounding the glowing inscription. Despil and Jurt start walking to it. Jurt,"Well? It looks the same. How far of prime is it?" Despil- "No idea... But its assailable. " Looking to Realmer- "We have a piece of the Primal inscription, and the rock below it... It wants to be reassembled. Stones will go to it like a magnet. The part of the inscription we have here is showing us a shadow of the full inscription. Like the shadowy pattern in Tirna nog'ath, its substantial enough to walk. Once we assay it we can walk among a few thousand shadows it creates.. But only while a shard is open... If it closes, we, and everything in it is trapped till someone opens a shard again or this shard is brought near another shard that IS open.. There are a few open ones in Chaos. This was your plan Jurt, your tantrum, and your theft. You go first. If you don't die, either Realmer or I will go next."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Alright. If Jurt doesn't die, I'm in. I'm guessing it is similar to walking the Pattern?"

  • Michael James Watson

Despil, "Yes, the experience is similar though my understanding is that its easier.. Less aggressive. Rough still but not like the pattern. It had a number of shadows but they all have a closer level of interaction and transportation. Also, once you assay it, as long as it remains open, one can transport to it from anywhere. This floated in a sea of Chaos once... "

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt steps up to the image and examine it. seeing it solid steeps out on it and begins walking. It ha a smokey effect at his feet, like walking and kicking up dust. There is a sense of shaking, a visual thing rather then a seismic one. The dust rises to Jurt's waist'

  • Michael James Watson

Despil walks toward the edge of the inscription to watch closer.

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt slows and the time to take a step slows. he shakes his head as he walks. The sky darkens with rain cloud, breaks, deluges the room, then the sun comes out.. Jurt steps through the outer edge, tarts to look a bit puzzled

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer, being excited about acquiring new power, takes all that he saw Jurt go through in stride, like a tutorial before doing it himself. Realmer takes the look of puzzlement on Jurt's face as being surprised at how easy it was or how different from the Logrus it was... either way, Realmer is now primed and ready to assay the inscription. "I guess I'm next" Realmer says as he steps up to the Inscription, as he would the Pattern, preparing his mind, then he sets foot upon it and begins walking its design.


Paragon Reborn

The sky is a blinding blue clarity of a land that has never known clouds. The land is green with lightly forested rolling low hills. The ground between the hills has the inscription lead among the depressions. Following the inscription comes to an open plain filled with trees of unusual colors. Broad trunks and vining plants mingle up into the blue and red leaves. Other trees are huge, dwarfing sequoias, with bright purple wood and florescent flowers in multicolored leaves. Low bushes with large flat leaves and multicolored berries spot among the thick green grass. Upon examination the grasses looks like it has a type of grain in it. There are birds with three wings flying among the trees. Insects like bumble bees fly among the flowers. The land is warm but not hot, thick but not humid. the scent of flowers is everywhere. The inscription walks among the hills till it comes to a down-slope to a land where the trees come up to a massive building. The architecture is minoan in style, grand and massive with bright colors and intricate design. Gardens are everywhere and orchards of olive and pepper trees fill vast areas around the main building. Evidence of people going about their business, tending the orchards and fields. Coming down the inscription it pases up to the main courtyard of the massive building. People stop their activities to watch you walk along the inscription. Some start following as realmer reaches the main courtyard. The inscription comes to a series of intertwined vines. At no point does his foot go astray. As he walks he sees Jurt approach the point where the inscription ends. Realmer feels ancient magics and vast ages of peoples long gone. He sees sudden war rage around him as chaosian demons and warriors come raid among the peaceful people who die without defenses. Jurt stands at the end of the inscription uneffected by the war raging. Parts of the sky diappear, leaving black stuff of chaos peeking through. The land crumbles and all is the stuff of chaos.. Jurt standing at the end of the inscription.. Stepping off Realmer finds himself in the vast building empty of people save for Jurt. And looking to his left he sees himself standing beside himself. Jurt nods. "Welcome.. Did I tell you to expect me? Did I tell you he would be created when you finished the inscription?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Wait... what? No, you did not tell me to expect you or HIM... ME... HIM. What in Creation has happened here? And what next?"

  • Michael James Watson

Realmer-"Don't ask me. I just got here too... No, you didn't mention it, Jurt. You looked distracted and cloudy Just stood there... Then i came up and just started walking..."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"No, I came up and started walking..."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"...I am Relmopator Barimen and you are a copy."

  • Michael James Watson

Realmer agrees with himself. jurt-"Yes, well, that happened. i got here and i was twins too. Once the other jurt left the place you are standing he disappeared. I assume back to Amber. And of course im a copy.. Or rather a construct like a pattern ghost"

  • Michael James Watson

i have a post above that..

  • Michael James Watson

jurt-"I have been here an hour or so.. Once i left this area the people came back.. Everyone who ever walked this inscription is here. There are many rooms.. Tell Despil to load up on tomes before he walks.. Then once here there will be copies here on his ghost. "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

 deleted and reposted for proper place in timeline. "Well, that actually makes sense. Though I never expected to meet my own Ghost, let alone at the end of the Inscription. How fascinating. If only I had time to tarry. Well, I must be going as well. I will tell Despil what you said. And oh, I have a few tomes of my own within the pockets of my Robes, but he knows that" Realmer points to his twin. "TaTa." Realmer uses the New Power to transport back to the room where he started, back in the lower levels of Castle Amber where his Familiar Bob is waiting.

  • Michael James Watson

Arriving back at the cavern Despil and Jurt are stacking tomes and chests on the ground, going through them for items that would be dangerous to take through an inscription. Items that might need attuning or react badly to that, Despil, "Realmer.. Good. strange thing.. Can you check your Mandalay stones? See if you have attuned them. I suspect you have but the ones jurt has were already attuned. I've sent one of my servants to empty my library in the embassy. I am tempted make a quick trip into shadow to a place of mine and transfer some things here.. Jurt said he had magical items on him, including his bag of holding. I came through unscathed. If the ghost has it too then its worth finding out if the items duplicate. Of course, i doubt duplicated items could leave Paragon. The legend is that those who assayed Paragon could transport back there.You and Jurt should try that as i walk. "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer does check his Mandalay Stones to see if they are attuned; he was hoping that they would be when he entered the Inscription. He really didn't want to walk the Pattern again and risk losing the Spiral Imprint and thus be forced to walk it again too. The Stones are still clutched in his left hand; he opens it and touches each Stone individually with his Psyche. "I also bore heavily magicked items with me as well, most made by me here in Amber in the Pattern Chamber... including this Robe which is basically a bunch of bags of holding all interconnected... and the pockets are filled with a variety of goodies. The Robe is also mostly sentient; ask the other me if that sentience is still intact as well as the contents of the robe's pockets... and the Hung Spells too."

  • Michael James Watson

Checking the stone realmer gets a sense of the stones he had not had before. Not greater powers but probably quicker access to them. The other items seem unaffected. The Ambir stone is blazingly hot but otherwise undamaged.

  • Michael James Watson

Despil is packed and sets out to walk, Jurt disappears, carrying the items that could not be taken through the inscription

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Before Despil sets foot upon the Inscription, Realmer says, "Despil, my Mandalay Stones are attuned and my other items seem unaffected. Good luck."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer now takes a moment to focus his attention on the Ambir JoJ.

  • Michael James Watson

The Ambir stone is cooling, though it didn't do that when you assayed the adag... inscripption

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Despil, you might want to leave the Big Blue Stone here... I have a Shade of the Jewel of Judgment and it fared ok, but it was hot and it didn't do that when I walked another Squiggle. Just a warning, best to be cautious."

  • Michael James Watson

Despil-"I've already transferred to stone to Chaos. I met dara at Zilla."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"How long was I in there? Never mind. All good. Again, good luck."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer looks to Bob, floating somewhere nearby, certainly. "Bob, how long WAS I in there... it didn't seem very long at all."

  • Michael James Watson

You took about 20 minutes to walk, then stood at the end for another 40. Just like Jurt did. It even rained during that time..During that time Despil trumped away and then returned on Jurt's trump"

  • Michael James Watson

bob-"He also took several chests. They argued briefly about the swords but in the end Jurt kept them"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"How interesting, about a 10 to 1 ratio by my personal time reckoning. The walk seemed like about 2 minutes and the talk at the end about 4 minutes. And thanks for the update on the goings-on here while I was gone. I am wondering how you would have fared had I taken you with me..." Realmer watches Despil as he makes his journey within and has Bob remain on guard duty.

  • Michael James Watson

Arriving at the courtyard it is well peopled as people go about their business. Jurt waves and walks over with Jurt2

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt-"Despil is on the inscription at the low hills. If you focus in that direction you can see the whole length of the inscription as if it was floating.. I'm also starting to get a sense of shadows here. It will take some figuring out. Im not sure how the cosmology of Paragon work.. There was understandably little information about it in the libraries of Chaos. Mostly gloriou battle and dexerved death of the hated foe kind of stuff. Nothing useful..."

  • Michael James Watson

j2-"ANd all these people are ghosts as well. They will fade away in a few moments as Despill gets closer. Not sure what that means.. Otherwise they seems to just go about their business. I was wondering something though.. I was here while you both were not.. But when you trumped in here I knew it. Realmer2 i over speaking with one of the senators here. They are finding us quarters which i assume means the inscription isn't going to fade us away."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"More and more interesting. And it appears I can communicate outside of Paragon with my Familiar via... Trump Power it would seem. Bob, can you still here me?"

  • Michael James Watson

Realmer gets a sense of Bob trying to communicate but it does not quite come across

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt-"Trump is a powerful method to channel pattern in your case. If Bob is imbued that way its not surprising. Trump can manage a lot. of course there are limitations. Pattern Trumps can communicate over the abyss but not transport. Logrus ones can."

  • Michael James Watson

moments pass and Despil comes closer into view.

  • Michael James Watson

the crowds fade away about the time the battle scenes occurred on your initial walk

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"It seems the Trump Power is not all that powerful... I can sense Bob and that he is trying to communicate... but it's not quite getting through. I hope our time here is not running out. Perhaps at least one of us should return to the Cavern to pull the others out, if needed."

  • Michael James Watson

jurt-"Well, i need Despil to come through to see about the stuff. and find a plce to lodge them around here.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"No worries, Jurt, I was volunteering myself anyway. I'll see you both back in Amber." Realmer returns to the Cavern and Bob.

  • Michael James Watson

Arriving you see bob floating, frozen in place immobile. On the Inscription is someone walking near the end and someone walking near the begining. They both are hazy enough to be unidentifiable.

  • Michael James Watson

bob i mumbling, making 'oooiiilllcannn' like noises

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer uses a Power Gesture (power word): Magic Negate to dispel the Spell holding Bob. He is simultaneously reaching for his Trump Deck to sort out either Jurt or Despil, whichever he finds first... most likely Jurt since Realmer has never really met Despil before today. "What happened Bob? Who are they?" Realmer asks while sorting cards deftly (thank you Tesa Resa).

  • Michael James Watson

Bob-"That's Brand. He froze me."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

As Realmer is sorting the Deck, if he comes upon Brand's first he will stop. [*Michael James Watson, which card does he find first? Jurt, Despil or Brand?]

  • Michael James Watson

Brand, being an elder, is higher in the deck. His card comes up first.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer is PISSED! First Bleys sneaks in on the Sawall Logrus, now Brand sneaking in on the Inscription of Paragon... AND messing with HIS Familiar! Realmer grips the Mandalay Stones tightly, focusing on them to Amplify his Psyche as he stares at the Trump image of his Cousin; Brand to make contact. Realmer intends to lock Brand in a Psychic Battle and hopefully interfere with his completion of the Inscription and deny him his little sneaky slice of power. Realmer is also prepared for a Sorcerers Duel or other battle with Brand should he be ejected into the Cavern with Realmer.

  • Michael James Watson

One difference though. Bleys already had the Logrus Imprint, as do Brand and Fiona.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

[good point. but still...]

  • Michael James Watson

Brand turns and looks at you across the vision of the inscription. Being a living trump he sees who is calling and does not respond raising his image of the font out of reflex rather then control. The trump seems hot to the touch and there is a sense of pain coming across it. . Despil's figure seems to stand in the fog at the end. Brand slows but keeps moving. The inscription itself also seems to be partly protecting him as he enters the fog at the end merging his form with Despil's.

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt steps into view, turning to the inscription quickly repeating the charm. The inscription closes. The room fades to black and the rock is a rock.

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt.. "Fuck... Two Brands are in there with a Jurt , a Realmer , and two despils...."

  • Michael James Watson

"What did you do to him on this side?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"This could be really really bad. Should we tell someone? Or more accurately, who should we tell?" Realmer asks Jurt as he opens his palm and gently lights the room by the glow of his Mandalay Stones. "I tried to lock Brand in a Psychic Battle via his Trump, hoping to interrupt his Imprint and possibly force him out. Guess that failed miserably. Should have remembered that Living Trump thing before I made a snap decision."

  • Michael James Watson

"Well there are two pissed off Brands bleeding from the nose. And they seem to think the Realmer in there did it to him. Despil told me to close the stone. Not sure what that does in there but it stands to reason that no matter what Brand does he can only really hurt One Despil. But he will have to fight 4 people.. I came to drop the stone till you and I could decide what to do about them in there."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Very smart thinking. Too bad Despil got stuck in there too. It would have been easy to leave just Brand in there, but Despil really needs saving, and perhaps soon." Realmer looks Jurt in the eyes and raises his eye brows and makes a hmmm noise. 'Well, this turned to Troll Shit about as fast as I expected... but not how or who I expected. Ah, that's the life of an Adventurer... or should I now say, an Amberite." He chuckles out loud, but mostly to himself. "So, what now? The Chaos' Ambassador to Amber will be missed sooner or later..." Realmer pauses for thought, then continues. "Perhaps longer than we both might expect... Despil is quiet and low key and his absence might go unnoticed for a little while." Realmer goes quiet for a bit, drifting into thought... "Still, who best to consult when we do?" he asks of Jurt and the Gods and the Powers and the Multiverse in general.

  • Michael James Watson

jurt-"ah.....Bleys? "

  • Michael James Watson

j-"Arlo? "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Not Bleys or Fiona. The red heads of Amber are more power mad than I am."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Arloxedra is a really good choice. I was going to suggest him as well."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"How good of terms are you on with Arlo, Jurt? You know he and I don't get along all that well."

  • Michael James Watson

ju-"Trumps seem to work from inside.. We can trump him in and not reveal the location"

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt-"He has been by the club occasionally but over the years he hs spent as much time in the Library as you did in the Dungeons.. Ill open the Stone and follow you in. We check the scene then one of us trump Arlo with an emergency come through?

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer pulls out the Defender Blade and slips it under the belt of his Robe. A Bone Wand appears in his right hand then becomes a Bone Staff. His left hand still holds the Mandalay Stones which he grips tightly. "Do I need to draw the Defender Blade to activate its Defending Power, or what? And perhaps you should contact Arlo while I battle Brand... and Brand, if needed. Get Arlo's Trump ready now..." Realmer pulls out his Deck again and pulls out Benedict's Trump and slips it up his right sleeve then puts the Trump of Sea View Gardens in his right outer pocket, then puts the Deck away. "Bob, you're coming with this time, I will need your help. Ready when you are, Jurt."

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt sings the charm, hearing it Realmer remembers it, and the land appears. Immediately Brad and Despil arrive. Brand points a finger at you. Looks at Jurt. Brand says, "I want to make one thing perfectly clear with you two, alright?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Speak your piece." Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr If Bob made it through with Realmer, he is on alert and watching for ambush attacks, and not just with his eyes.

  • Michael James Watson

"This thing is IN the Castle. I did NOT leave the ground. I did NOT break my parole... I had no idea i would be transported anywhere. And I AM in the castle now...so.. I didn't break my parole and no one s going to collect a duchy on my head. Now, I assume this was one of the things Jurt stole...Nice.. I didn't have much chance to check but from context i can guess its either Paragon or Calmir, Both are broken artifacts of order.. Which is it?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer gives Brand a hard look then tries to speak calmly. "I care not for your parole or any bounty for you breaking it, Brand. What I am upset about is you taking advantage of somebody else's power grab. First Bleys, with his leap into the Logrus of the Sawall Gemstone, now you doing this. By all the Primal Beasts! Can't a few guys grab a little power in peace? And secret? I have nothing against you personally, Brand. In fact I was thinking of seeking you out to discuss matters Arcane... a part of me still wants to... but the other part of me is angry as a summoned Elemental for you crashing our little party." Realmer sighs now that he has vented a bit. "Paragon."

  • Michael James Watson

'Paragon....A shard of Paragon...in the dungeons of Amber...interesting..First off, I DO care about my parole. Its more important to me then pretty much anything. Its the difference between eating a meal on a tin plate and eating from a buffet at Sea View Gardens. And until you have crawled out of the abyss, Cousin, that may not seem like a lot but i have done so and its a lot to me." He conjures a brandy bottle. "Secondly, I told Random something powerful was occurring below the Pattern Room. It was hidden so well that neither Bleys or Arlo or that psychotic Doria could sense it but since the Pattern has been tutoring me in the Arcane I've become familiar with its power frequency and this thing wasn't it. Random told me to check it out. Once i was here, well, sue me, i did it. Frankly i was half convinced it would kill me." "As for your little party, i think i can find a nice party favor to give to the founder of the feast but we would all be more comfortable about it if we got Random's permission. I know what side of my bread is buttered. I happen to know that one of the treasures that is in the vaults of this castle is a stone of paragon the size of a greyhound bus. The thing is too big to use as an inscribing tool, too awkwardly shaped to forge on , and friggin nothing chips off even grains of it. But if we brought it here i bet it would weld itself to this piece. I also know that Aries Colbresi has three shards but they are so small they can't be assayed but they make hellacious inscribing tools. And I also know that Regor owns a 2% shard. So hook or crook...." "As for discussing the Arcane, my door is always closed but its got bars on it so we can speak at your leisure. Shall we go tell Random about this now?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer looks to Jurt and Despil and shrugs. "Technically, this is your party, brothers Sawall, I just got a last minute invite and am grateful for the party favors. If you want to oust the gatecrasher or change the music to his tune, I will go along. The decision is yours.... but Brand is shrewd, so I've heard, and he may be able to cut us all a sweet deal. I'll follow your lead."

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt-"Its not like Random doesn't know we had a need for the biggest frigging room we could find in this labyrinth. i doubt he thinks we are decorating it and making a bed and breakfast spot. 'Creepy Motif Inn-free vampire with every room' Hey, if Random knew something was going on why just send you?" brand-"I figure he didn't think the three of you could get in too much trouble. Turns out you managed it. Look, Im going to tell Random one way or another and there really isn't much that can stop me. So, im going to pop up to my cell, run a few cleaning spells, put some tea and sausages on the fire to cook, then give Random a call. So I'll give you about 20 minutes to get this thing out of Amber before Random comes down here to stick a flag in it. Or you can come up to the cell room and talk to him yourselves and we can see what kind of deal you can make. And Jurt, you are still on his shitlist for your burglary. Giving him access to this thing might go a long way to smoothing things over. Later.." Brand disappears.

  • Michael James Watson

and SCENE


Visiting Brand's Cell and King Random's visit to Paragon

Brands Cellar has expanded since he was given parole. He can open and close the door for 16 hours a day. It now has seating and a couple tables and is something of a conference room. Many barrels from other mixed chambers were transported to line the walls. Light is from illusionary torches that Brand can dim or brighten. Brand is sitting on his bed, a writing board with parchments in his lap. A feathered pen in his hand leaves multicolored writing.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"We'd like to make a deal and not have to be on the run and possibly end up in a cell down here" Realmer begins as he stands in the doorway to Brand's cell. "I can only hope I get a cell a spacious and well furnished should I ever be incarcerated here. May we enter and palaver, Prince Brand? I have brought drinks; something I know you have not had..." he pulls a green glass bottle from a pocket with his left hand, "a Dwarvish Pale Ale of my own creation."

  • Michael James Watson

brand waves, setting aside his writing tablet. "By all means. And lets drop the titles. They have a sense of unreality if bars are involved. Either iron bars or polished wood bars. Ill get the glasses..dwarvish pale ale? What makes it dwarvish?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Why, the high content of dwarf, of course" Realmer says with a wicked smile and a twinkle in his eyes as he pulls the cork and pours two glasses, leaving the empty bottle on the table, then he pulls out another green bottle, uncorks it and pours two more for Jurt and Despil. "Seriously; it's the ingredients used, the ratio of ingredients to each other, and the specifics of the brewing process; as is usually the case with any named, regional or racial brews. You could just as easily call it an Urnst Mountain Ale, the region where the initial recipe came from. I found something similar in a Shadow that did not have Dwarves and they called it a Skoothish Ale, another Shadow called another similar brew a Brakkton Ale." Realmer puts the second bottle on the table and picks up two glasses and hands them to Jurt and Despil. Then he picks up the other two, hands one to Brand and keeps one. "But mostly what makes it dwarvish is that it is strong, very strong; dwarves are notorious for having a high tolerance to intoxicants. A normal Dwarvish Ale is thick and heavy, bitter from overuse of hops and most non-dwarves find it unpalatable and will only drink it on a dare at best. Though I always enjoyed the kick of Dwarvish Ale, I found it too thick and too heavy and a bit too bitter, so I crafted my own more palatable version; I introduce you all to Realmer's Dwarvish Pale Ale, recipe number 63... finally got it perfect. This is just the second batch from that recipe. Here's to good deal making for all involved. Cheers." He raises his glass.

  • Michael James Watson

"Cheers indeed." He takes a sip nodding.. "Excellent. I've quaffed all but a quarter of it. If each of you will do the same and pass me the glasses ill show you a clever trick."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer does so; leaving a quarter of the liquid then passed the glass to Brand.

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt and Despil do as well. Brand sticks his finger in his and rims the top of the glass. He begins to incant-"Cuius satietatem Bacchaus nomen aeternum" he repeats it on the top of each glass. He raises the sign of the pattern, visible, reaching his hand into it he incants again. "Cuius satietatem Bacchaus nomen aeternum" Looks up and winks, "Abracadabra...." The glasses fill. 'Ill keep this one if you don't mind A workman is worthy of his hire, they say. Now you can always have this particular brew on hand. oh, and remember the incantation. I always keep a few hung since one never knows when the dredge i get given by guests and Dame Margot might be particularly memorable.' Quaffing again he moves to his comfy chair and settles in place. "Now, what story are we going to agree to when we speak to random?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer puts on his 'innocent face', which on him looks a bit more like a creepy blank stare, then raises his hand with his index finger extended and looks like he is about to level it at Jurt or Despil with the intent of leveling the blame on them too, as it was their idea. But then he stops before he actually points at anyone and holds up the same finger in a just a minute gesture and the expression on his face looks more thoughtful. "As novel as it may sound, perhaps we should try the truth. None of us has done anything treasonous... to the Crown... of Amber... thus far. And Random knew we were about something involving power down here and he more or less let us do it. And I am sure Random knew you" he looks at Brand "would try to sneak a bit of what we were doing down here, considering power was involved. Now, Brand's idea of giving Random access to the Rock could certainly get all of us off his shit list and we might even end up smelling like flowers on the other end of this. Unless there was more the two of you were to trying to accomplish and working with Random would put a kink in those plans?" Realmer looks to Jurt and Despil then continues, "I don't see why we would not want to deal with the King and share power, at this point."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer takes a drink of his re-filled Ale, checking to make sure it is actually the same, and recalling the incantation and ritual to make it happen. Then he adds as an afterthought. "Or I could fabricate a believable story that the King may believe if it came from me, but only because of my record of staying out of trouble, mostly." He pauses a moment. "An angry son of Sawall is pushed to far and makes a snap decision then robs the family treasures. When another estranged son of Sawall discovers what has been stolen and sees an opportunity for power he grabs it a quickly as he can. As do two Amberites that became involved by circumstance, mostly. No conspiracies. No cabals. No toppling of Empires or usurping of thrones. Close to the truth but lacks any premeditation on anyone's part." He drinks another swallow and awaits their thoughts.

  • Michael James Watson

Brand-"Random might have bought that when he was first king, but he ha been king now for 70 years and seems quite good at it. He knows that every story has three sides to the factor of as many people as are involved. So you don't have his side. I would guess that our oooo so friendly Ambassador from Chaos suspects that the Lord of Theldane would not have sent anyone qualified to negotiate with Amber for Chaos because such people are more rare then honest men. And he might have confided such fears to the new king. Two men new to their roles. Random would not have suspected base treachery from Despil. But he would expect it of Jurt who has brought wild madness to the streets of amber with his ginjoint writ in wickedness. " He sips the ale and stands, walking over to a collection of bottles and glasses that look like the guardsman's tableware. Picking up a bottle with a resealable flipping ceramic lid, he brings it back to the table. Pouring a quarter from his glass in the bottle, he incants, "Cuius satietatem Bacchaus nomen aeternum" tice and as the bottle fills clips the stopper in place. "But, being a wise king he also knows what only a few in Amber do. I being one. Isn't that right Jurt? Not so much the refugee bringing Chaos are we? More an immigrant bringing distraction and loose lips, and a place to compromise those susceptible of treason. A place those with petty grudges might whisper their angers and misdeeds to wicked woman and pay goldwings to enjoy their little treasons.. And who does the proprietor of such a den of inequity tell these tales too? Why, his silent partner, the king. Quite a good cover for the spymaster of Amber, isn't it?"

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt sets his glass down, "Oh...Brand, you come as advertised. " Brand-"Realmer, I would say your evaluation is the best. Honesty first. And it has the advantage of being easy to remember. Two young chaosian angered over perceived mistreatment by king and kin, come to Amber. All the sons of Dara have sworn to Amber, have you not? As well as a pair of your cousins, SHaz Far and Vekoshasa. The Line of Lintra is a game one. What did Dara tell you at Zilla, Despil? The king told me so there is no reason to lie. " Despil frowns..."I'm being replaced. Recalled to Chaos" Brand-"And you decided not to go. Jurt's spur fof the moment decision to raid the vault of Sawall just sealed the deal for all of you, didn't it? Merlin is in Avalon, Jurt is here and now you are too. So.. You'll give back nearly everything, especially since to tomes are now copied. And you'll have a comfortable life here in exile bringing treasures aplenty to your new king."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer nods his head up and down as he assess everything again in his head. "So it is settled. We go in with the truth and work the best deal with Random we can. Best to get this done quickly. Shall I Trump the King?" Realmer ask generally of the room, knowing all have the King Random Deck... or equivalent in Brand's case.

  • Michael James Watson

Brand nods, lowers his head and disappears. A moment later he reappears, Random and Doria in hand. Doria, an infrequent presence in the castle, nod briefly to Jurt. She has a M249 light machine gun, with a pistol grip for the left hand and a mounted m203 grenade launcher both with rune-engraved short clips in place. Her right hand rests on the hilt of of a Blade of Red Gale, the symbol on the hilt of covered by her black gloved hand. She backs to a wall, and her glance looks like one looking for fire solutions. Random walks over, picks up the nearest glass and drinks. "Well, we have been busy haven't we? I have received word that Sawall has withdrawn their letter but Chaos is sending a new Ambassador. Sawall is still pissed purple but they are not making it a federal case, claiming they will handle it as a family matter. Jurt, the more you give back, the less pissed they will be, but i doubt anything will placate them well. Now, Brand tells me you gentleman want to explain what happened that made Kolvir shake and the Jewel of Judgment burst into flames in its case? Im listening"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer looks to Jurt and Despil then back to Random, he sighs and begins laying it out from the time they got to the Cavern in the Lower Levels. He does not leave anything out, except the part about Psychically attacking Brand and bloodying his nose. He does mention taking the Mandalay Stones along for attunement and that he had his Ambir Jewel with him too and that it was very hot after he finished the initiation.

  • Michael James Watson

Random---"A shard of Paragon. And an assailable one... That does explain one of the hsaking problems. Sargent Drusda reported that one of the vault rooms had a hell of a racket in it and was shaking the exterior walls." Looking aside he makes a mental call..'Carly? Yes.. Tell Bleys to empty the vault Drusda was mentioning and to bring everything in it to Realmer. He'll be there in a moment. Hell, we all will. " "Ok, lets go see this rock. " Brand rolls his eyes and looks at the silent Jurt and Despil. B-"Don't forget to bring your flag, my liege"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer leads the way through passages and stairs to the intended room, where, hopefully, the Shard of Paragon is still sitting in the middle of the room on the floor. Realmer does provide any needed illumination along the way and once in the cavern. "Majesty, the Shard of Paragon. Shard of Paragon, the King of Amber, Random the First." Realmer makes appropriately comic hand gestures to help lighten the mood.

  • Michael James Watson

Rand-"Well, its a rock.." Despil walks to the rock and whispers the chant. Momentarily everyone is standing on the ground of Paragon, The sky above bright blue, the ground grassy. Around the edges the cavern can be seen and the entrance to the chamber. The sigil of Paragon glows cheerfully. Random walks around it, "All from a peice of stone little more then a coffee table?" Despil-"Yes, sire. One Half of one percent of the original inscription. that's enough to activate this place and its shadow of the assailable inscription of Paragon. Gramble had assayed it and brought us to some of the shadows reachable within. Ah..While i am grateful for beign allowed to set this up here, and im willing to allow its use, i must say that Title does not pass. It belong to Jurt and myself. Should Merlin or Mandor want to claim partial ownership ii would no argue. " Brand chuckles. "My hero....." Doria walks around the edges, not on the land, staying in the chamber not the land. Ran-"Im not going to argue it but i will say this. In a moment Bleys will be here with a friggin huge Rock of Paragon. A state secret. Its massive but being a Rock, not a shard, it has no inscriptions. Its been used for magical works since Oberon brought it here before the creation of the Kingdom. So..if it comes in her and welds itself to yoour rock, then Amber gets a say in its ownership as well"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"King Random has a point. Co-ownership might be best. But since I'm not one of those owners I don't actually have a say. It is just my suggestion."

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt and despil look at each other. Despil-"Agreed. Our interests coincide. And it does seem we will be here awhile. Since my replacement comes soon, i shall travel in Paragon for a time. It is my understanding that the more material the shard has the greater its reach withing its sphere. When we were there i could sense perhaps a dozen shadows. that's a small amount for a work such as this. Also, remember. It may be a source of power but it seems interested in peopling its shadows and uses pattern ghosts to do so. We had twins in there, even Brand, and during the conflict he was bled and his twin was created bearing the injuries. So its fairly exact. I would suggest not taking the jewel through" Ran-"You didn't mention a battle. Who were you fighting Brand? " Brand shrugs, "Oh it was nothing, just a negotiation on the meaning of life and someone's displeasure at my manner. I hardly feel loved if someone isn't hitting me these days, Liege. Though i should mention that if Wyndham Feldane hots be again im going to shrink his shorts till he sings soprano and pees like a girl. " Looking aside, "Not like you, Doria, im sure you pee standing up like the big dogs do." Doria-"Damn Straight." Bleys arrives with a hogvering rock the size of 3 grayhound busses in length and on in width. It is shaking and fighting Bley's control of his levitation spell. Bley looks mad as hell.

  • Michael James Watson

When the stone enters the room the Land of Paragon disappears. The stone breaks Bleys' control and slams against the smaller stone and its inscription. The two fuse with the inscription in the center of the new larges stone. Despil whispers the song and the Land appears. IT looks much different though no bigger. It has a small open coloumned building around the inscription in the Minoan/Paragon look. Seating areas and several fountains spread around the comfortable space. Large trees of the paragon style are seen as well as some of the bushes.. Jurt whistles, "that's impressive. Ah Random, a thought, You might not want to walk the sigil yet. We can trump you in. Having a double of you in there might be a problem. " Brand-"I would concur, liege." Ran-"Then go along inside and pull me through.. Doria, watch the door. Jurt, Brand and Despil disappear into Paragon.

  • Michael James Watson

Upon Arrival the difference from the last time is stunning. The first time the place seemed empty, even though people went about activities robotically. The sky was clear. The building while massive had a feeling of incompleteness Now the sky has clouds. The sounds of birds are everywhere. Fountains are in side alcoves among the colonnades. Gauzy cloths hang with ornately painted designs and separate areas for many reasons, catching the breezes. Banners top the corners of the builds. The Central courtyard looks more like its part of a living place with the inscription ending in the center providing the main colorful display. In the distance is the sound of an fiery music that scratches at some ancient memory lodged in the genes urging the listener to dance. Somewhere children laugh and play. Clusters of men and women in light togas of many colors talk, look over tablets of paper, go about other business. Among them is Brand2, wearing a bright red toga very nearly see-through who speaks to a man and woman, dressed in blue robes with silver embroidery. Despil and Jurt look around noting the differences. Brand trumps Random who steps through followed by Bleys. Brand 2 sees the group and walks over waving casual as he comes. B2-'My liege...Since you are here you must have an idea where you are. I want it made clear that I did not leave the castle and am not breaking my parole. Of course i'm also a creation of Paragon so the legalities might get a little tricky." Ran-"I hope you don't mind that my biggest problem might be having two of you. " Brand-"The pattern can create ghosts as you well know. But my permanence is not maintained by effort of the Sigil. Its a onetime function of the Sigil. the first time one walks it the doppelganger is created. I've spoken to sorcerers here and they are clear on that. oh.. I ramble.. " Despil-"How long have we been gone? Do you know where our doppelgangers are?" Brand, "We decided one of us should be here at all times till this gets settled. Its been almost a year. About a week after you returned to Amber there was an amazing expansion. Jurt is probably at the baths this time of day, Despil and realmer are traveling among the shadows. I am told the expansion caused the realm with its 12 shadows to suddenly connect to over a 100. Most are fairly bare. The residents of Paragon have mostly died off over the ages. After the expansion a great many pattern ghosts were created in some of the shadows. The being living beings they did what living beings do; the started having children. so children from various shadows spend some time here, getting familiar with the Sigil and breathing the air of this marvelous place. " Random-"I should look around,,, is anyone in charge?" Brand-"They have a senate. I'm currently a member. They pay lip service to a High Lord but the last one died in some ancient epoch. As for looking around, lets go to our place and get you settled in. We have about 20 room near one of the lightwells. " He starts walking toward a passage, waving to others.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer entered just after Jurt, Despil and Brand, taking Bob with him. He looks around at the changes and listens as Brand 2 and Random speak. When Brand 2 begins leading the way Realmer addresses him. "Brand.... number two... wouldn't you, and they" he waves to the other non-real people in the area, "more properly and accurately be called Paragon Ghosts? I mean, I know you are using the term Pattern Ghost generically, but the doppelgangers here are not a product of the Pattern, but the Inscription of Paragon. Which leads me to my next question; did the Inscription of Paragon have a name like the Pattern of Amber or the Logrus of Chaos?" Realmer turns to the real Brand and suddenly asks, "Oh, and I was wondering... Brand number one; did any of your blood get on the inscription? And if so, what were the effects, if any?"

  • Michael James Watson

Brand2-"Esoteric terminology aside I would agree since so far Im fairly reasonable as Ghosts go. the Pattern of Amber has been dropping pattern ghost on me daily to torment and argue with me over my past behaviors. some i can just ignore. But ignoring myself is just rude. Especially since the ones the pattern sends are often ones that walked the pattern during my madness. As for the name of the Paragon Inscription, were you thinking Fred? Danny Boy? Maude? I have a feeling it will tell us in time. It is talkative, and far more directly communicative then any of my other imprints." brand1-" Not that I noticed, But if i had it would have been a shadow.. The Primal on the stone seems fairly resilient. Im not sure the pattern would survive being split up like this, Also, i think it might need the bloodline of its original creator to mar it. Fred the Inscription here seems fairly willing to let people assay it. You know, the tale ha always been that if you were not of the blood of Amber stepping on the pattern would cause your death. It isn't true. Aries Colbresie studied the pattern for a couple centuries, building his kknoladge of it up to bolster his powers of sorcery, conjuration... trump... and other dsciples that use the pattern. Then, as he tells it, he got very drunk one night and stepped on it. He survived but how is his story."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer chuckles at Brand 2 “Well, I wasn't thinking of naming it myself, I was just wondering if it had already been named and if that name was known yet... but now that you mention it, Maude does sound appealing.” Realmer smiles to himself and then comments to Brand 1. “In regards to Aries Colbresi, I am not surprised that he survived the Pattern. While at the Academy at Fantalin I heard a rumor that he actually has a bit of Amber Royal Blood, like a distant cousin or something. Another rumor stated that he is the First Shadow of an Elder Amberite, either Oberon or Dworkin most likely. But rumors abound about the Staff amongst the students.” After Brand and Brand 2 answer his questions, Realmer's mind is already thinking about other aspects of this 'Place of Paragon' and its Ghosts; specifically his own. Realmer tries a little experiment involving Trump and his Doppelganger. Instead of drawing out a Trump Card, Realmer uses the Trump Image of Himself contained within the Ring of Satura. Realmer stares into the black sapphire set into the platinum ring until the image of his own face appears within the depths of the black jewel. Realmer concentrates on the image, but instead of focusing on the coolness of the Trump Power to establish a Trump Defense, which is how he usually uses his own Trump Image within the Ring.... he actually looks at his facial features and pushes his Psyche away from himself, like he would when trying to contact anyone by Trump, and outward towards that other self.... his Paragon Self... his Paragon Ghost.

  • Michael James Watson

Bleys listening nods, "We didn't know Dworkin was kin till after Paternfall. But a few of us realized once that was known that Aries must be a close shadow. There are mannerisms that exho each other. Later study i think he is either a shadow of Dworkin or perhaps a shadow of finndo. Aries was born after Finndo's riegn so its hard to say.' The experiment with the ring makes contact with realmer2 'Where are you? Tme is strange here. The realm expanded before our eyes...what happened?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

“Ah, Realmer, it did work. Excellent. I was wondering if Trump contact with ones Paragon Ghost would work. I am here in Paragon. What happened is, a huge Stone of Paragon was brought into the Cavern and was fused to the Shard of Paragon. The four of us that were duplicated are here and we Trumped in King Random and Bleys, we are about to have a meeting here.” “Also, I was wondering, what items were duplicated, or specifically, which Items were not? I was mostly curious about the Mandalay Stones and the Ambir Jewel, but also curious if my Artifacts were not only duplicated but also function exactly the same; including the sentience of each being intact. And any other contents of the Robe that were not duplicated. Plus, I hear you have been here for a year, and traveling; how do you and things fare?”

  • Michael James Watson

"There is no Ambir stone or Mandalay stones. The defender and excavation swords didn't come through magical. The ring and robe are behaving erratically and I may have to work on them to stabilize them I think the magic didn't duplicate well. We have 5 rooms in the Amber floor Brand and I established. Jurt and Despil have a Sawall suite the floor below."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Yes, I heard Brand 2 referring to rooms and himself being a Senator here. Somehow I knew the Stones and Jewel would not duplicate, but I did not expect problems from my... your crafted Artifacts. Perhaps I can help while I am here. I hear you're traveling with Despil, would you like me to bring the pair of you through for the meeting, or would you prefer to stay abroad?"

  • Michael James Watson

"It would probably be better for us to continue. Despil and I thinnk we will come back to stand for senate next year. there is a lot happening now.. There is something happening to this shard because its finally open. It languished in so many vaults over the millennia the inscription slept. Sleeping, it lost its people. It activated when we opened it. Now the inscription is remembering its people. The think is that it can feel the other open shards. But at this point they are all seperate realms... The inscription is sad that its broken. It may take long years butt the Imprint can be reassembled. Despil tells me a shard equal to nearly a full quarter of the original inscription exists in chaos, A realm called Catala. Lord of Chaos treat it like any other way but its a true piece of Order. Something to think about"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Something to think about indeed. I will mention it when appropriate. I will also give my regards to the others from the both of you. Give my regards to Despil. Travel Well, my Paragon Self." Realmer breaks contact unless his other self had something else to say. Once contact is broken, Realmer begins paying full attention to his surroundings again, catching up on any missed conversations, if needed.

  • Michael James Watson

bleys-"Im sorry Random but its out of the question. Frankly i won't do it. We can't have a copy of the king in Paragon. Not unless you intend to conquer it. Br2-"I think they have a strong belief in senatorial law. I doubt a conqueror would have much luck. Besides, as the shard gains more who knows what the inscription might remember. Ran-"Is it in our interest to see it enlarged? How many pieces are there? Despil-"There is the Way of Catala in Chaos. 25% of the mark and the biggest peice by far. The Rock Paragon is a fixture in a black zone world. Said to have 10%. Birasarquis is in the Abyss. Thought to have a good chunk of it." Brand-"Regor has a shard with 2%. To the best of my memory it is not assailable. There is an order of Wizards in the Cynsure region that claim to own a shard and have wizards who do have Stones of Paragon. Particularly nasty choasian wizards. Hate order. " Bleys-"I hate to say it but Tolknor owns a shard with at least 5%. He claims he has visited the land in his. Claims to have a collection of stones as well that have been used as power focuses by sorcerers in the Tosa worlds for eons." Ran-"Ok, so there are pieces around. We just need to find them..Ask around..Kicking the bushes will bring out the owners looking to make deals. Make deals.. Lets return to Amber"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer gets the gist of the conversations and nods his head as though he has been paying attention the entire time. When the other get up to leave, he will as well... he still has other matters to attend to; a mating ritual for one... though the timing of that one was out of his control... but he did still want to contact Kala Kala for another contract he wanted to discuss. He also needed to check on Kevin and the resurrected young lady.... just the first things on the top of his mind.

  • Michael James Watson

good enough..

  • Michael James Watson

Returning to Amber Random leaves immediately to other business. Jurt says he is off to Thin Whip's Place. Despil to the embassy to see to his papers.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer tells Jurt he will visit Thin Whip's Place later, when he is ready for some drinks and relaxation. He pulls out a Trump for Vulsar Base and transports there to check on Kevin and the Lady... if they are still there, he thinks mid transport....

  • Michael James Watson

He finds her well recovered, talkative, even bubly.. Kevin is excited to see Realmer. The two seem companionable but Kevin seems ready to move on. She has gotten a cat.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer is please to see them both well and scoops up Kevin and cuddles him a bit. Then Realmer asks her name, asks where she got the cat from and where she will stay and work. If she needs a place to stay and work, Realmer will make arrangements with Jurt, perhaps, for a job and a clean and safe place to live.

  • Michael James Watson

She says the cat is from here, Vulsar. the star fleet people want her to stay there so they can research the magic used on her. While there she will study and maybe join star fleet. ITs far out of what her expectations in life were growing up in Amber. She is grateful for her rescue beyond words..

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Well, if you should ever need anything you may call upon me. I Am Lord Relmopator. And your name lovely lady?"


An Offer, Jurt's Stash and The Throne of Paragon

After some time in the Kingdom of Vulsara, where Realmer was unable to meet the new King Vance, he get a Trump contact

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer first tries to identify the type of Trump contact. If it is Amber is origin, he will try a trick Dworkin told him about once, and sort through the King Random Deck until he can tell who is calling... if he can.

  • Michael James Watson

Its an amber trump and when you start narrowing it on a card you think it may be Jurt.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer allows contact, cautiously.

  • Michael James Watson

"Hey.. I've got company and they want to see you too. Care to come through?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Sure. Vulsara is a bit boring for my tastes; too much technology. Where are you? Who are you with and should I change my attire?"

  • Michael James Watson

"Well, im in a cavern outside Diega. 10 to 1 amber. Its sort of a bolt hole of mine.. I was resting here and this fucking guy shows.. Its not a knives out thing but he wants to talk to both of us."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"I understand. Did he give a name? Would you mind describing him?" Realmer feels a bit paranoid and prepares for the worst.

  • Michael James Watson

'He didn't give a name because i know who he is, and he is freaking me out. And he wants to speak to us both. I can't talk more on trump because of the bloody eavesdropping"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Pull me through" Realmer says, his Bone Staff in hand with the Red Mandalay Stone temporarily mounted in the eye socket of a skull atop the staff.

  • Michael James Watson

Stepping into a large cavern the fist noticeable thing is that the room is filled with gold. Gold art. Gold bar, piles of gold coins, chests and chests, some open filled with gems. A veritable dragon's hoard. Jurt is sitting in a gold throne though he looks awkward in it. Near him is a dark skinned man with blond hair in a brooks brothers suit, black and black shirt. He has a small round table with a crystal bottle of purple liquid and three glasses. Jurt nods, "Realmer, This is Cadice Jesby. a Lord of Chaos. Cadice, This is Relmopator Barimen, a Lord of Amber. " He nod, "Its a pleasure.. Now we can talk." Pours three glasses of the purple liquid. Sets two at the edges of the table

  • Michael James Watson

"Lord Jurt, Lord Realmer...Well, Jurt would know, but your sir should, Im a broker of bets. A gambler by trade.. And a wager has been established in Chaos concerning you two. A fair fortune has been set in escrow to its completion and certain factors will pay off on various elements. The first element is occuring now"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer is immediately intrigued and takes one of the glasses of purple liquid and holds it up and says, "I am more than happy to listen and drink. Are there any other chairs here, or should I Conjure my own?"

  • Michael James Watson

he nods, a chair appears, "My pleasure. The first bet was if you would pick up a glass. " He picks up his and raises it, then drinks, raises it again. "To the patron Lords of Chaos"

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt comes up and takes the drink. It is a smooth potent brew tasting of floral rose.

  • Michael James Watson

Jesby pulls out two hockey pucks and puts them before each of you. "These are obsidian discs. Inside each is a House Stone." Jurt goes wide eyed. "ReallY?" He nods, "Yes, Jesby is staking this game. Care to hear the terms? Or is a little treason to risky for such as you both?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer leans to Jurt and whispers, "Looks like a Dragon's Horde in here." Then turns to Jesby and says, "Explain what a House Stone is and for what House, then explain the terms." Though Realmer has lifted and snifted the glass, he did not drink.

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt picks up the puck, examining it through a logrus lens

  • Michael James Watson

Jesby"a House stone is needed to establish a formal House in Chaos. Break the puck before the Tomb of the Ancestors of Darkness and then place the stone before the throne of Swayvill in Theldane. Do these two things and a House is Created. It would only have one person but from such a seed great houses grow. No fealty is required, no blood is drawn. Once completed, the House is named, and from then on, its all politics. There are forces willing to gamble on many elements as this game proceeds. Win or lose. Among them is that Jurt must survive assassin's hired by his father. Bets are in place..Other stakes are active now as well. the next one is if you will claim the obsidian discs and participate in the game. This may take an Age in amber to resolve, but it begins when you each claim your disc and begin the path to create your house in Chaos." He refills glasses.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer smiles at Jesby and places the still full glass, untasted, back on the table and says, "I was already offered a House in Chaos; House Barimen. I refused it, I refuse this. So sorry you had to travel all this way. Well met and good bye." Realmer turns to Jurt, "Do you want help getting rid of him, or do you have it under control?"

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt picks up the disc, kisses it, "Its under control. Jesby, tell your people to establish me a line of credit. " He nods, "Very well Lord Jurt. Lord Realmer, this disc waits in the Hall of Games of the House Jesby, It shall be there indefinitely. Good Luck, Lord Jurt. If you come to Chaos, you will have safe haven in House Jesby." He stands, the table and bottles fading to smoke. He withdraws a trump and steps through it

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer just looks at Jurt, silently.

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt steps back the the oddly angles throne and runs the disc over his fingers

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt smiles, "Unexpected, but again not a surprise.. Chaosians will bet on anything. "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Well, I rarely bet on anything, unless it is part of a strategy. I am not a fan of gambling, not in the traditional sense. As far as others betting on me or my actions or lack of actions, that is of no concern of mine. And I am not interested in the game presented or the reward offered. But it seems you're interested.... or you want them to think as much." Realmer says with a smile.

  • Michael James Watson

"I have no interest in founding a house in chaos. However, great houses have stones like this to give to honored retainers. Sawall had none. Jesby just put two into the game. I may never use it, but i have it just in case. On never knows..."

  • Michael James Watson

"You were noticing the gold? Yes, its a funny story. Shows in a way the lack of business acumen in Amberites and shadow walkers. Its so easy for them to amass a fortune in what every currency they desire that they forget how hard it is for everyone else. We are in the Treasure trove of Diarsa. This is a shadow a few shades from Diega. Its long been a bandits and raider's realm. Centuries i understand. It has a variety of shadow defenses that have caused even the best shadow walkers to only find echos of it. Brigands, orcs, blue dwarves, unemployed mercenaries, disavowed nobles, escaped prisoners and every kind of riffraff gets drawn to these shadows where they hideout while raiding the trade routes into Diega. They also have some ports where Pirates have long plagued the sea route of Amber and Diega from. Diega has called on Amber a lot over the centuries. Bleys says over the centuries he, Corwin, Eric, Flora, Caine and Gerard have all come and wiped out various incarnations or the brigands that get drawn here. I suppose its understandable i got here eventually, being both villain and hero. Yet no matter how many times they raided the place brigands always returned to people the land and they never found the great treasure of the assembled raiding" Playing with the puck he goes on. "So a couple years back i was shipping a rather large cargo of pure Trasidy Urala and the caravan, led by a business partner of mine named Adavan, and the raiders her hit it. Now they took it fairly close to Diaga and while i could have managed it on my own i tend to be messy and flashy and i didn't want that kind of attention on my essentially illegal importation of a controlled substance into Amber. So I contacted one of the cousins, Macsen, to help. He is of Trasidy and I played on his sense of righteousness and loyalty to his countryman of Trasidy. He had just left Benedict's finishing school. He volunteer and he and his squire, a remarkable woman came to see about it. You see, Macsen holds Wayfinder,one of the Red Gale blades that is a hell of a tracking device. When he got to them he called me. I got there and he not only had his squire helping him but friggin Dalt, his father, and a provincial from Adagalasck you probably know; someone named Trualta, called the Horse Lord. " He conjures cigars, lighting one and inhaling the multicolored urala smoke. "We used Wayfinder, found the brigands and followed them down a long tunnel, inadvertently shifting shadows. I called on Bleys for esoteric technical advice and he came through. As we finished off the rest of the brigands Bleys realized what we had done was find the secret entrance to the brigand's final hideaway in Diarsa. Bleys, Dalt, Trualta, Macsen and his squire went off to ravage the remaining brigands." He makes sailing ships of smoke sail through multicolored rings in the air, "They informed Random about the discovery of the tunnel, and sent off to Diega to take over the shadow. And they all essentially ignored the extraordinary hoard of treasure. I transferred it to a shadow i had and let them take over the shadow and its pathetic population of victims the brigands had serving them, Some for generations. The heroes got the glory and the accolades, restored order and freed the brigand's prisoners, and received the thanks of a grateful Diagan royal house and all their merchant guilds. I got the treasure and recovered my Urala. Fair deal. Adavan was delighted with the 2% of the treasure trove i gave him as a finder's fee. He after all, is a man of business."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"I rarely collected wealth of any kind except to pay for my magical endeavors. Though... I am fond of gemstones and jewelry; carries more value for the weight than most any precious metal or other currency I have come across." Realmer lights up one of the cigars with a Cantrip, inhales deeply, and blows multi-colored smoke as he exhales, then continues. "Once I learned the Amberite way to wealth, well, I collected many gems and jewels for the purpose of trade as I traveled through Shadow. I still have a few small stashes in Shadow and I always carry a small fortune in gems at all times." "So, I don't know what you're up to next, but I have a few things I would like to do, before I Proceed with the King. Three or four of them you could accompany me on... and possibly help me with. And before long I must plan a night at Thin Whip's Place."

  • Michael James Watson

"There are places in chaos that would make this treasure look like a piggy bank. Some lords are avaricious in the extreme. And there is some buying and selling in chaos. As one might gather, exchange rates are variable. But trade is handled differently there. The Lords of Chaos, even minor ones like myself, Despil, Vek & Shaz Far, have the same abilities to create wealth as Amberite shadow walkers. So the lure of gold is negligible. Still, its nice to have a place like this just for the art of it. Gaudy, to be sure, but interesting. And its amazing what you can find in a dragon's hoard. The brigands for a thousand year brought things here.. Who knows where this throne came from but When im sitting in it i can tell I am being lied to. Im going to instal it in my club someplace gaudy,"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Well, yes; there is a certain aesthetic to an all gold hoard, to be sure." Realmer looks over the Gold Hoard, noticing the different shades of 'gold', the polished bits versus the tarnished bits, visually picking out any items that are not purely gold. "And I am familiar with Dragon's Hoards and the odd and surprising things that can be found within; I was personally involved in the slaying of two Dragons, at separate times of course. In both instances, there was more treasure than we could take so we all learned the Art of Looting a Hoard. Plus I was also turned into a Dra...." Realmer trails off then turns away from looking at the hoard and looks purposefully at Jurt, one eyebrow raised. "Wait.... you did just say that the Throne gives you the ability to detect lies? I recalled reading that a Stone of Paragon as well as a Shard of Paragon has the same property.... and you also just said you have no idea the origin of the Throne...." Realmer focuses on the Throne trying to use his Imprint of Paragon to determine if the Throne is of Paragon in any way, or if the power is just a coincidence of similarity.

  • Michael James Watson

 Jurt stands, looks at the throne.. Raising the sigil of the Logrus he stretches his hands in to visible tendrils. Running his hand through it. The imprint of Paragon is new to Realmer and when he focuses it sends shooting pain piercing his brain left to right, back to front and as it leaves out the front of his head a symbol appears. It is quickly spinning counterclockwise and building up speed. The pain gone there is a sense of fractured and difficult to control power in the shimmering symbol before him. Looking at Realmer in concern Jurt suddenly grimaces and the symbol appears before him as well. He seems to be applying his Psyche to control its rate of spin, to slow its wild advance down.


  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer is used to pain and he breathes and focuses through it. When he sees/senses what Jurt is doing, he does the same, slows the spin of the Sigil with the force of his Psyche; he does not stop it instantly, as that could be dangerous and painful, he slows it down to a very slow spin, only stopping the spin if he feels it is correct, then looks through its center at the Throne.

  • Michael James Watson

as the wheel slows there is a face in the center, a bald pale face man with the look of good humor, a slight surprised smile. Part of the sigil appears in front of him. He has a look of a young man but something in his eyes is an old soul.. the face lasts a few seconds before fading.. Through the sigil a tiny fragment of power rests deep within the base of the throne, in cased in solid pure gold. It pulses in the Paragon vision as if recognizing a friend.. Yet the sigil seems somehow potent, yet fractured, deadly an undependable. Willing but reluctant.. There is something about it that is unnerving to the esoteric magical senses of a sorcerer. Without trying Realmer identify 12 places for hanging major spells and as many as 20 for minor spells, but the shimmering of the sigil make him think they may no reliably hold them. There is a sense of other powers just out of reach of the wielder of the imprint.

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt-"Well, ill be damned, and probably.. The Logrus sight didn't show that nugget in there but the paragon one does,...tricky"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"I wasn't sure if the Pattern Sight would see it either, not that I have tried, but I figured if there was a trace of Paragon on this Throne, the Sigil of Paragon would detect it. Did you notice that it seems there are missing powers of the Sigil? And that the Spell Slots seem to be a bit unstable? And did you see that face?"

  • Michael James Watson

"I've seen that before. Woven Logrus, Broken Patterns, the Crumpled Sigil, Fractured Mal at Riess, several different abyssal sigils. Constructs not quite reliable or somehow damaged. It can be potent to hang spells on them but i wouldn't hang life and death ones. As for the face, i recognize it. a face out of legend with a portrait in the ancestral hall of Theldane; The Sage of Catala. He rules a realm floating in the deep reaches of the stuff of Chaos.. and... it is rumored that his realm is based on the largest surviving shard of Paragon.. and now he knows us. "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Well.... I guess we should expect a message or invite from the Sage of Catala someday, or maybe an emissary. It seems of late that I am getting invited to participate in a variety of events and rituals based on power of one sort or another. Perhaps I should check my Astrological Chart and do a Tarot Reading for myself... and just maybe... visit an Oracle." "I wonder if the Throne itself is of Paragon as well, or just the... Shard perhaps, within? Let's take a look." Realmer focuses on the 'nugget' within to determine 1) If it is a Stone or a Shard, 2) If the 'nugget' is bound to the throne or can be removed and 3) If the Throne itself is of Paragon.

  • Michael James Watson

The throne seems to have some kind of shielding to make it undetectably magical to nearly all sources. Jurt purses his lips. "Hmmm that's interesting.. Ah, Realmer.. would you mind sitting on that thing for a second? I want to test something."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Well.... only because I've seen you sitting in it already. Should I drop the Sigil or leave it up?" Once Jurt answers Realmer will do as Jurt asks and sit on the throne.

  • Michael James Watson

"Drop it.. no... raise another.. Amber or Adagalasck...." Realmer raises a sign and sits. J-"Well damn... that's something.. Ok, come look at me through the pattern and Adagalask lens and ill do it. " Replacing places Jurt raises the Sigil of Chaos and Realmer can see it clear in all its writhing glory. When Jurt sits down the sigil appears gone. In fact Realmer can not sense any magic through either lens, as if jurt was a non-magical person with no imprint of any kind. j_"I've the Logrus up.. Its locked, stocked and ready to rock. Now try the Paragon Lens.' When he does he clearly sees the sigil of the Logrus as Jurt says. j-"Cool huh? now i really want this at the club."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

As Jurt requested, Realmer dropped the Paragon Sigil and brought up the Spiral first, then sat. While sitting he switched to the Pattern. Once they switch places and Realmer learns what Jurt had discovered, he grins from ear to ear and says, "Absolutely fascinating. I can see why. But I wonder if the Shard within is powering the Throne or if the Power is part of the throne itself. Or maybe a combination of the two." "I wonder what else in this Golden Hoard is of Paragon?" Realmer raises and lowers both eyebrows repeatedly, then with the Sigil of Paragon before him, he begins scanning in a circle around him. He is not looking at anything specifically, but more over looking for Auras or feeling for a pull towards something or a sense of Paragon about something or an area.

  • Michael James Watson

Among the piles of loose coins and gold plate, items,sculptures, and loose clutter are many gold braced boxes of rare woods. In them are signs of a large number of low order magical items and things that have residual magic showing that they may be more potent in different shadows. Among these are four that stand out. 2 are long identical boxes 3x3x5, holding tightly stacked items that have a strong magical signature of high order origins. One is a long narrow brown leather case with a signature of a pair of items inside. The last in a small long case in a wood that is smooth and has a two items inside of high order magic. All four cases are together, showing that jurt has clearly already examined them

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Looks like you have already found the magical goodies" Realmer says as he nods towards the stacked up crates. "I wonder if a Spell might help us learn more about this Throne. Jurt, I'm gonna try a couple of things to see if I can learn more about our Mystery Throne." Realmer knows that Magery (Warlock) works in this region of Shadow and is pretty sure Wizardry (D&D) does not, so he first tries a Low Order Magery Spell he has memorized called: View Past, which Realmer focuses on the Throne.

  • Michael James Watson

View past looks into the recent past of the area cast. Realmer might see week into the past but nothing ancient and nothing out of the room However, casting the spell anyway as part of a process he sees Jurt speaking over a trump while sitting in the throne. It looks like a very volatile conversation.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Even though Realmer is fairly confident that it will not work, he casts a Wizardry Spell: Legend Lore. If it does not work, he will try again with the Sigil of Paragon up and he will try to focus his spell casing through it.

  • Michael James Watson

Placing a hand on the throne, after jurt vacates it, he starts the ritual. Jurt goes over and muscles the large box of tightly packed item over to another table and fiddles with the lock.. A vision occurs of a massive red skinned dwarf sitting in the chair, sweaty, dripping with perspiration. Around him is forge fires and people working on many projects. The Dwarf stands and walks to greet several humans entering the smithy. they give him a box the size of a foot locker. He opens it, nods, closes it and waves. The men approach the throne and levitate it out of the chamber. Once gone, the dwarf laughs Jurt has pulled a smaller box from the bigger one

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

If the Vision is completed, Realmer will look to the boxes Jurt has piled up to see if any match the one the red skinned dwarf was given, accounting for aging, of course. While he is looking over the crates and boxes, Realmer relates exactly what he saw to Jurt.

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt pushes a small box over. none resemble the ones in the vision j_"These are clever. Take one. I've heard of them. Gonna take them to the bar and figure out a way to cut down on kitchen problems. Each contains a dinner plate, salad plate, dessert plate, and a cup& saucer. Three times a day each one can fill. One never knows what will be on them except its food. As I understand it the longer a person owns them the closer they get to providing food to their racial preference. Wonder what they think Amberites like mostly. In my experience Amberites prefer alot. Though Vek is an Amberite and he was a prep chef in Hell i hear. Well, Hendrake Hall I mean. Man could end up with roast flank of centaur. Oh the saucers provide a snack try with each meal.. Funny high order magic to make.. Mandalayan i think, but i can't be sure."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"It absolutely sounds Mandalayan. I read something about Mandalay and it sounds identical to what you just told me about this Dinnerware. And I will take a set, thank you; save me from having to use a Spell or order and wait for food from the kitchens, Castle Amber or the Embassy in Adagalasck. And sounds like it might broaden my palate in the process." Realmer stretches an outer pocket on his Robes, via Item Shape Shifting, and pushes the box in until it disappears. Jeff, the Robe, will move the box to one of the larger inner pockets and reform its outer pocket back to normal appearance. "I'm going to try the Spell again, to see if I can learn more, but I'm going to try something a little different this time; academic curiosity. I won't be able to do this again until tomorrow at earliest... need to re-memorize the Spell. Perhaps I should invest the time into making this Spell a High Order Spell... might be more useful and more informative being based on a High Order Power." Since the Spell worked on its own, this time Realmer will focus the Legend Lore Spell through the Sigil of Paragon hanging before him. He recalls that the Power of the Sigil of Paragon greatly boosts Low Order Magics; perhaps he can get another Vision, perhaps he can get more of the Story of the Throne.

  • Michael James Watson

Holder of a shard, and initiated to it, is greatly boosted in using low order magic. Casting the Legend lore while holding to sigil of Paragon up causes the symbol to spin again quickly. The vision come painfully. It shows the giant Dwarf holding a piece of rock with a tiny point emitting light. He walks to a forging table and pushes great power through a narrow beam into the shard and a short laser point comes from it. The view turns and shows 12 identical swords, differing only in their pommel. The blades each glow. He runs the inscribing tool over each. He walks to the throne, sinking his hand into the solid gold. Removing his hand, open, empty. He steps up into the throne and fades to sleep A blinding pain drops the sigil of paragon and racks Realmer's psyche into submission. Realmer wakes to the smell of coffee, Jurt kneeling next to him, "Realmer? Come on... wake up.. The effect is fading...Wake up..I've got Azcalan coffee ready for you."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer takes the coffee and drinks slowly and carefully. He does not push himself, he takes his time to recover from the effects of pushing things too far. Once he feels better, and the coffee kicks in, he will then finally speak. "I learned quite a bit on that one... combined with what I learned from the first I may have some answers. But first, how long have I been out?"

  • Michael James Watson

"About an hour.. Hope you don't mind but i used a clean spell on you and your clothes.. Sort of... well, wouldn't want to go to court smelling like that."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Thank you, Jurt, it was a painful Vision. I'm not surprised I made a mess of myself." Realmer then relates the second Vision to Jurt, same as he did the first. "I think the massive red skinned dwarf is the God Vulcan and the Swords I saw are the Swords of Power... or as they are better known as, the Blades of Red Gale. And as I am sure you saw, the Shard in this Throne was used by a God to inscribe Power into those Blades. I believe this Throne is a mighty Relic and bears more study... I'm not sure you should be displaying at Thin Whip's Place; I don't think it would be prudent. I am sure there is more to this Throne than what we have discovered thus far."

  • Michael James Watson

jurt nods. "Perhaps.. But i certainly can't take it to the dungeon. At my place it will be plenty visible. all hours of the day. If there is a shard in it then it must be a tiny one. We can study it there. Close to Amber, not owned by Amber. And if they want the shard in it they will pay big. Right now I've got trouble. My brother is sore at me. Random is about to get a visit from his new brother in law and he will be escorting the new Ambassador to Amber from Chaos. And Random is going to be pissed purple when she gets there and this is all my fault.. Hmmm Red Gale blade..hmmmm that gives me an idea..." He sips his coffee. "Of course, that beg the question how did it end up here? Who was sending it somewhere near enough fr Diasara raiders to grab it? How long has it been here?'

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer finishes his cup of coffee then looks for a pot to refill his cup. He also looks to see if there is anything to eat; he knows he needs to replenish his energy. "Well, I wasn't suggesting you take it to Amber or give it to the King... I was just commenting that displaying it at your Club in plain sight might not be wise, but..." Realmer pauses a moment as he thinks, then continues. "But, you may be right about it being safe where it can be watched at all times... I was just concerned that some patron may recognize what it is and try to use it or take it... and, I believe, this Relic is too important and maybe too powerful to let go or let fall into the wrong hands." "My other concerns about it being in or too close to Amber is that as we are researching it and experimenting with its powers, someone, or several someones, may very well sense those emanations of power and come looking. My other concern is that Low Order Magic does not function in Amber and thus far, it has been Low Order Spells that have given us the most information on this Throne. But, with a little time, I could craft a High Order Spell that would duplicate the effects of the Low Order Spells I have been using." "As to your questions as to how it got here, how long, by whom and why... those may be answerable by way of more spell casting as well as some research in... well, I was going to say the Library in Castle Amber, but maybe we should research this outside of Amber for the time being; if either one of us goes into the Library looking for a tome on ancient gold thrones, Arloxedra will certainly become involved. Though his skills in Research and Magic are beyond reproach, I think it best to keep this between us for the time being. Maybe I can visit the Academy at Fantalin and use the Academy Library instead. I might attract some attention, me returning to the Academy, but better Aries than Arlo... Aries will be curious, but not like Arloxedra. But, this is your Relic and your decision to make; I am here to advise and research." Realmer grins and winks at Jurt then looks to the Throne and wonders about it as well... Who was it made for? Where was it taken? And how DID it get here? Hide 50 Replies

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt-"You make a good point. And echo a few I've thought since i found the thing." He pulls out several plates from the dish bow and raps on them, filing the plate with an odd mixture of foods, Jurt picks up a cashew butter and sardine sandwich and sits back in the throne to nosh. A pasta dish looking reasonable normal fills a dinner plate "There are plenty of sorcerers in Amber these days that might be able to feel us manipulating the forces. I know you and Arlo are not on the best of terms but my problem with him is that he is a direct channel to Random. But whats worse is that the new Ambassador to Amber is a world class badass sorcerer and a deeply evil bitch to boot. It going to be bad enough when i see her but having her feel me working the logrus and checking up on me would just suck.. Aries is more scholarly but he'll call Random too. So who do we trust? mandor and Fiona might be good but im not on good terms with them. Suhuy would just claim the thing. "We need someone with high esoteric skills and who might not go directly to Random. I have a couple suggestions, though they are bound to piss off people across the board. One's name is Digan, called the Ruby Mage. He's director of Magical Services for CHAD. Hes been to my place several times and we have had some interesting talks. The other person is Nur al Din El Musifar, another Tosian, though he is not currently a member of CHAD. He is a Thrice Crowned Bard, and Archmage, and...well.. You know that Tosa/York bein in a shade of Amber react to the shadow systems as if they were Amber themselves and in that comparison his has become the High Lord of Chaos in his shade level. As such he is an object of mockery in Chaos. Its only fair to mention that Digan, though a Tosianm is an actual Lord of Chaos as I am though my understanding is that he is defroked having fought beside Tolknor at Patternfall. "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer picks up the plate of pasta and a fork, finds a place to sit and tries a bite of the food before speaking. "Well, my list of candidates is very short; my Cousins, Archmage Ninaaratres, the Titular Queen of Adagalasck, Mistress of the North Wind and her sister, Archmage Emiliesa, Mistress of the East Wind. Both are in Adagalasck, a Primal Realm with a powerful inscription." Realmer pauses to take a few bites then continues. "I also have a secure Shadow there, off of the North Stair. I am sure neither of them would run to Random, nor do I think their husbands would either, Julian and Caine, that is. In fact, if we make it seem esoteric enough, without mentioning too much, we might be able to avoid the involvement of Julian and Caine all together. And we may not even need to consult Emiliesa." Realmer pauses again, taking a few more bites before continuing. "My only other candidate would be my Grandfather; Dworkin. I am sure I could get him to leave Amber to consult or assist, but I cannot guarantee he won't tell Random or take the Throne for himself, for study or power, or both." Realmer nods to himself then begins eating again.

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt nods, "Dworkin....that's some big guns. i think he might just take it and tell us to go play with less dagerous toys. Digan owes me a few favors but the CHAD people, the leadership that is, creep me out a little. Lop came to my place once and he looked around like he was deciding how to redecorate it after he foreclosed. Of course my club has a crapton of the members every night. Got to love adventurers. Free with their gold, free with their powers, never learned how to adequately protect themselves from psyche probes. As for Nina.....That's interesting.. I'd like to meet her. There is considerable gossip about she and her sister. I understand Chaos is going to send an ambassador. would you call her or do you have a trump to your places there?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"I agree with your assessment of Dworkin; and I'm sure he would lecture us like we were children before he left. I have had some dealings with CHAD and their leadership; I have a personal guard I hired from CHAD when I first got here, not realizing I had an assigned Elite following me around already. Any way, got CHAD working in parts of Adagalasck from time to time; they were quite helpful during the War with Hagalta and Tonacat's troops." Realmer finishes his plate of pasta and pulls out two bottles from his Robe pocket: one large filled with clean water, the other small, filled with a Restorative Potion. He drinks the potion first, waits for about 10 seconds, then drinks the bottle of water as though he has not slaked his thirst in days or weeks. "Nina... yes... I can contact her; I have a Trump of her, not from the King Random Deck, given to me by Julian... it has never failed when I have used it before. Plus I can contact her via the Spiral, like I did you, if needed. And since I don't know your Digan, even by reputation, but you know of Nina, at least by reputation, then perhaps she would be our better candidate... in my opinion. Shall I try to contact her now?" Realmer is already reaching for her Trump, not the one in the Deck like the rest, but up his sleeve inside a special pocket just for holding a Trump card.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Oh, and... I'm not sure saying Nina owes me favors is accurate, but I did awaken her from her long sleep, opened Adagalasck, returned her lover and husband to her, helped oust Hagalta and resolve a political matter that had been troubling Adagalasck for centuries. And she ended up being the Queen, Titular, of Adagalasck... all because I decided to go to Adagalasck to find my mother. So... I think we are on good terms at the very least."

  • Michael James Watson

j-"Digan is a voluptuary. Reminds me of Mandor sometimes. Elegant. genteel, exquisite taste. Lots of food and dining magic. He has a great power where he never gets dirty. Pour buckets of blood on him and it slides of him and anything he own. Impressive.. A Tosian power I'm told. But he is a first class wizard and a powerful sorcerer. He leads the CHAD wizard's Corp. He has been attending Amber functions as a CHAD representative. He scares the nobles because he is a Chaos Lord of sorts but also a fan of Order. Everything can exist in Chaos, even devotes to Law. Call Nina"

  • Michael James Watson

"Digan runs with two....companions? One is a talking cat with a fire trollstone of its own mounted in its forehead, covered by an illusion of fur, and he is a very potent low Order Mage. The other is a leprechaun girl who has apparently born two children for an old one named Cthulhu and lived to tell of it. The creature buffed her life forces up and imbued her with power to make her survive it but she is creepy as hell. Broken. Broken, crazy, a Madwand, and dangerous as an abyssal demon. Being around Digan calms her down thankfully"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer, as he draws out his Trump of Nina, looks at Jurt and says, "Powerful companions, indeed. But I think we need less madness and more reason. I will call Nina." Realmer focuses on the image of Nina on the Trump that Julian gave him, waiting for contact...

  • Michael James Watson

the contact come swiftly "Realmer! What a surprise.. I thought you would be off a wandering for a generation of men. What do I owe the pleasure to?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Ninaaratres, wonderful to see you in good spirits. I have a favor to ask; I am in need of one highly skilled in the Arcane Arts and equally knowledgeable in Arcane Lore... and, to be honest, someone who is unlikely to consult with King Random before, during or after our discussion. And though I trust very few, and those I do trust, I only barely trust, as is the case with all from Amber and Adagalasck... I feel that I can trust you more than most, and I was hoping we could keep this matter between us... and another I am involved with in this matter. Are you willing to keep confidence in this matter?"

  • Michael James Watson

'I should consider myself complemented but im not certain. Will you come through or shall I? Its been an age of Amber since i left this realm. Might be time for it"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer partially covers the Trump, not enough to break the contact, but enough to mute his conversation with Jurt. "She said we could come through, but it really sounds like she would love to come here... she hasn't left her Realm in ages. Would it be acceptable to bring her here, Jurt? Saves us from having to move it."

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt nods and taps the plates to refill with fresh food. Nina steps through, looking around the gold filled room with a bit of surprise. Nina nods to Realmer"Thanks you for inviting me.. This room is quite a sight. One rarely sees this much treasure in one place. I can smell the manipulation of forces..oh.. you are keeping company with a Lord of Chaos i see.. That is unexpected." She raises a sign you are unfamiliar with. It writhes in red and black and feels oppressive and heavy in the air. Jurt leaps to his feet and raises the the Sign of the Logrus "Realmer!!!! She's an Abyssal Lord!!!!!!!!"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer steps between the two of them, but does not raise any Sigil of Power, only his hands. "So I have unusual acquaintances" he says to them both. "Now, if you could both please, drop your respective Sigils and relax so we can talk Magic over food and drinks. And if the fare the Plates provide is not adequate, I will gladly Conjure up some refreshments more to everyone's liking." Realmer looks from one to the other, looking each in the eyes. "Please, can we all get along?"

  • Michael James Watson

Nina laughs..."To be honest i wasn't sure i cold raise it still. Emile and I spent very little time there as children before Oberon brought us to Amber."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Well, in that case, let us enjoy an exquisite meal in equally exquisite surroundings. Jurt, if you don't mind, I'm going to temporarily requisition your hoard, but don't worry, when I dismiss the Spell, everything will go back exactly as it was." Realmer cast a High Order Spell based upon a Low Order Spell from his past; Secure Shelter. It will take any and all available materials at hand and turn them into a shelter of Realmer's desire. The gold treasure turns into walls around them, forming a large single room with walls of gold going from floor to ceiling with open windows in each wall. It also creates a round dining table and chairs, also made of gold, for the three of them to sit at. Any gems contained in the hoard would have been incorporated into a single 'stained glass' window. All of this occurs around the area of the Throne, with it now being off to one side of the 'dining room' with the gem window behind it. Once the Secure Shelter Spell is complete, Realmer will cast another High Order Spell of his own creation; Resplendent Refreshments (think 'Mandor Level' meal). Fine porcelain tableware appears along with platinum flatware, then the food appears on platters in the middle of the golden table. Realmer includes a variety of popular Amber, Chaos and Adagalasck dishes... and his personal favorite; steak tartar. There is also an assortment of alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks and fine crystal glasses and goblets. "There. Much better. Now, can we sit, eat and talk? That Throne over there is the object of of our discussion."

  • Michael James Watson

Nina nods, "I thought as much. It emits high energy... " Nina picks at the food looking at the throne. Jurt looks unamused for some reason. Jurt asks, "Oberon brought you to Amber, after siring you and your sister? Your trumps, and the commentary on them, say you are Adask and she is fey. I gather that isn't true. " Nina-"Young Lord, i sense your imprint of the Logrus is relatively new. Does Chaos pride itself on rudeness still? To answer your question I am racially Adask. My sister is fey. These races may be found in the Abyss and Oberon did so. Oberon created a sanctuary and brought our races out of the abyss. Stripped two whole levels of hell of its fodder and brought us to a land of our salvation. The Chaos Lords refused to preserve us out of their angst over the House Barimen. Oberon left our peoples in the sanctuary, along with our mothers, and took us to Amber.. There we knew love and betrayal. Oberon stole us from our loves, and sealed us in our sanctuary. He left many artifacts of hell there. and what he wrought..grew. Now, Rude Lord, you called me here for my expertise and got a lesson in history. You, are in my debt. Acknowledge that or i shall splash you in blood across these walls of gold."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Jurt, I am pretty certain she could do it and just as certain I could not stop her. And... you were a little rude to my guest and, hopefully, our help with this matter. And Nina, there is no need to jump to threats... or promises of violence; I am sure Jurt meant no offense. And it was not he that called you here for your expertise, it was me. Jurt wanted to contact someone else, someone from the Courts that he knows; I convinced him to allow me to contact you instead. Nina, please retract your... threat. Jurt, please apologize. Please, both of you, do this for me, as a favor."

  • Michael James Watson

Nina-"No.. i will not retract my threat. But i need not act on it. We all have our area of experience. I'm sure your companion is a skilled...juggler? Dragonslayer? " Standing, deliberately turning her back on Jurt she walks over toward the table of the strong items.. She runs her hands over them. "Tell me, Realmer, what is my expertise worth? I assume you did not intend to pay for my service with these coin? "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"No, Cousin, this hoard is not mine to give; any part of it. And to offer to pay for your expertise with simple wealth, no matter how grand, would be an insult; I am certain you have considerable wealth of your own and, as with all Amberites, you could easily go find more if you so desired." Realmer, who is still standing, picks up a porcelain cup and saucer, the cup is filled with a strong tea. Realmer takes his tea and walks over to the Throne that Jurt vacated when he jumped up at Nina's arrival. He has a seat, making himself comfortable. He holds the saucer in one hand and the cup in the other, he takes a sip and smiles. "To be perfectly honest, Nina, I'm not sure what I could offer you that you do not already have. You possess Power, both actual and political, you bear multiple Imprints, you rule your own Stair, you are the Queen of Adagalasck, your Realm is unified, you have a husband you love that loves you in return, and I am sure you possess Magical Artifacts far beyond those I possess or could Craft. And I am certain you know more people of influence and power than I. And I am equally certain you know more people in general than I, so I am sure your sources of Information are far better than mine. I have spent most of my life in Shadows of little consequence to the Grand Scheme of Things and the rest of my time cloistered in the Dungeons of Amber doing research or in Adagalasck, most recently." Realmer pauses for a moment and says, mostly to himself, "I really need to get out more." Then he focuses on Nina again. "So, with that said, perhaps I should defer the question back to you, Nina, and ask; what is it that you want that you believe I could offer?"

  • Michael James Watson

"You give me too much credit, young sir. I was Mistress of the North Wind because in the age of my isolation the realm had need of my powers and i rose to that role through the process of the need of the people. As did my sister among her people. Our realm was not of our creation but it was a refuge for our peoples and then it was a prison. I spent a few season in Amber, when my husband and his brother were young, then i was sealed in my tomb. while my name, and that of my sister, may be bandied about among the rulers of realms we have met few of them. While people are trickling in to Adagalask through the Jeweled Road, few leaders have come. " Taking a bite of something to consider her words carefully. "As for powers, I was born in the Abyss and I acquired certain initiations as a youth before Oberon rescued us. If you have never been in the Abyss it might be hard to understand that while horror is a staple of life there, life exists. It strives, it grow, it tries to care for itself. It is vast as Shadow and deep as Chaos and many things there would rock the thrones of Order and Chaos. But i did not become mighty among those there when i and my people left it. "What i have learned from my time with my husband is far more then i had before. I have learned a a phrase. "A seat at the table and the ear of the king" You ask what you can offer that you have and I do not? I do not have the ear of the king, and i measure that you do. I do not have a seat at the council of powers, and i gather you do. Julian and Caine abandoning Amber undoubtedly has not endeared Random to me and mine. But a word from you might change that. He comes in force to my realm, invites us to travel with him to Chaos. Julian sees this as recognition, i see it as a threat. But perhaps a word in my defense from you would sway the king to recognize, rather then to conquer. I have not walked the Pattern of Amber in Amber. The one i walked was recently ripped from the abyss by a kinsman of ours and that is a king I do not know either. Your word might convince them to give me permission to assay them. " Turning to Jurt, "And you, who fears me without reason, I smell the Courts of Chaos on you. I have never been to the courts but its denizens have raided the abyss for powers and made the hell realms worse. They seek the source of the abyss. They seek to steal the stones of power that fell to the depths and rest as rubble before the Tomb of the Ancestors of Darkness. They seek shards of the dead realms of Paragon and Calmir that they foolishly threw into the Abyss. I do not know if your word is worth anything in Amber, but i sense it is. So you can pay me for my services in that coin as well"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer sips his tea and nods his head in consideration of all Nina has said. And since he is sitting on the Throne, he knows the truth or lies of her words. (Is Nina speaking truth?) "Before I say more, I would like to hear from Jurt." Realmer turns towards him. "If the three of us are to work together, perhaps you should clear the air a bit. Why the hostility, Jurt? Will you be able to work with Nina?" Realmer is also checking the truth of Jurt's words too, but I'm sure he is aware of that.

  • Michael James Watson

Nina was telling the truth for the most part. Realmer gets a sense she was downplaying her powers but the chair does not seem to think that is exactly lying. He gets a strong poke when she says to Jurt that he fears her without reason. There is a quiver of something, not an untruth, but possibly a deep truth when she mentions the dead realms of Paragon and Calmir. Jurt looks at Realmer and puts his hand on the arm of the chair. "Of course i can work with her. As for why the hostility? Realmer I have been around creatures of Chaos and creatures of the Abyss my whole life. There are a great many initiations in the Abyss, as in Shadow and Chaos, and there is always a reason to fear those with such imprints. However, to raise the sigil she raised one must seek the very depths to the place the symbol of the Abyss rests, near the Tomb of the Ancestor's of Darkness. There is a shortcut to the Tomb of the Ancestors of Darkness in King Random's deck. How he managed that is a trick worth knowing since the place itself has usually refused such magics. So one can get there quick if one has that deck. Everyone else, Chaosian or Abyssal, has to go the hard way; on foot. To do so one must be steeped in deep evil to persevere that far down. how she acquired that imprint is also information worth knowing. But, as you point out, we just need to work together. " He pats the chair arm a couple time grinning at Realmer. "As for you m'lady. If you can do what we hope you can, the information gained might be pay enough. But regardless, you'll have gained my respect for your powers and if asked, I shall favorably common on them. you mentioned something though..You say the shards of Paragon and Calmir were thrown into the abyss? this is not part of the legends in Chaos of those realms. Do you know legends of who threw them in?"

  • Michael James Watson

She walks near the Throne, placing an hand on it. It seems to shimmer under realmer. "Lords of Chaos of course. Creatures of deep woe who were mighty in the youth of all things. Lord Jurt, does it not seem strange to you, as a lord of infinite chaos, that there should be titles there that stratify ranks among those mighty and weak? Would not power be all that was required? Why calculate genealogies except to track powers? You know of course that in Chaos there are creatures of great might that not only have never heard of Amber but have never heard of the Courts of Chaos and its king, the High Lord. One of those beings at the end of all things came east ripping Chaos and a being of great might created Paragon to stop it. It existence offended powers of woe so greatly that they tried to tear it down. In those wars the great house of Chaos collated to do battle. Ancient monsters named Hendrake and Channicut and Helgram gathered followers and did war. becoming houses. In doing so, they became less chaotic, wouldn't you say? " "In time the great consumer of chaos came against Paragon and broke it, scattering it, and it was itself stunned. So the surviving lords gathered the power they could, the scraps of Calmir and a thousand other constructs of power and sanctified the base of the abyss. In doing so they opened a rift to a place of non-existence that allowed existence.. a paradox, and they put the stunned creature into the place and sealed it within. Then those who were mightiest in powers and wickedness swore to keep the door closed and they established domains in the vat empty Abyss. Legends.. I know..but i never met but two of those ancient creatures, those first Abyssal Lords. One saw me through the refuse at the bottom to attain my imprint in hopes it could devour me or my sister. The other Oberon fought and slew to steal away two peoples.. But woe that they were, they keep the door yet. And the realm that stunned Entropy with its destruction was cast in crumbles.. And a sliver of the sigil of Paragon resides in this chair"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer sips his tea as he listens to Nina's oration on the Abyss, the creation and destruction of Paragon and the early history of the Courts of Chaos... and he is intrigued to know more. He smiles at Nina's declaration of a Shard of Paragon residing within the Throne, then addresses her. “Firstly, I believe you are now giving me too much credit, Dark Lady; for as far as me having 'the ear of the king' or 'a seat at the council of powers'... I would say that those two privileges are situational at best... after all, I have never been invited to a poker game.” Realmer chuckles quietly then continues. “But considering recent events, perhaps I give myself too little credit. Regardless, I will certainly speak with King Random on your behalf, as well as for your sister and your respective husbands, and I will broach the subject with him as soon as I am able, most likely right after we conclude our business dealings here. I will also do what I am able to get you, and your sister, permission to walk the Pattern in Amber before we take our Long Walk with the King of Amber... I have also been asked to accompany the Procession to Mandalay and Beyond... I believe that will be your best opportunity to get 'a seat at the table and the ear of the king'.” Realmer takes a sip of his tea, swirling the warm liquid in his mouth, savoring the flavor before swallowing. “I find your knowledge of the Early History of Creation fascinating and would love to hear more, but for now, two questions. The Being that shattered Paragon, was it the Being most know as The Serpent of Chaos? And the Being that created Paragon, do you know its name, perchance? And you are most certainly correct about the Throne containing a Shard of Paragon, but what else did you learn? And what else do you know about the history of this Throne?”

  • Michael James Watson

She smiles, looks over Jurt with an appraising eye before turning to Realmer, hand on the throne's arm. "The easy answer to your last question is that I've no idea where the throne comes from. I can feel echos of images but who or what they portray, i can't say. A warrior king, a man drenched in blood, a courtier in silks, a woman in chains. That's all i can say.. There is an oracle in the South stair that might be able to tell more. She is called the Blue Seer. She sees things that occurred around a person or thing. But she is fickle and mad.'

  • Michael James Watson

"As for what else I learned, its that this Lord of Chaos of yours holds a secret of some power and i stole it from him. He may be angered with me but its for him to avange himself the theft or name the price for the knowledge. I can pay" She smiles at Jurt.

  • Michael James Watson

"as for the creature who broke Paragon.... no...it was not the Serpent. Nor the Unicorn. Nor any primal beast. It was an ancient thing come to being in the farthest reaches of Chaos, beyond the stuff of Chaos where other rules apply. Endless chaos fills all places but paradox are those things from beyond that. Things of formless shapes, like the shadow of the horse or the sound of the sparrow, forces of nature that exist only to fill their purpose.. From there comes the creature meant to end all things. That even the shadow of a horse must flee from. If it calls itself a name learning it would mean embracing it. So the Lords of chaos from the deep places called it Entropy. It rode across chaos and behind it the paradox of nothingness. it Entropy consumed all Chaos then nothing of chaos would remain. Its nature is nonexistence." Jurt nods, "And it rests with the Ancestors of Darkness." She looks to Jurt, "I doubt it rests. It devours or it fights those the Abyssal Lords have allowed to be placed in that place with it. Such as king Oberon , my father."

  • Michael James Watson

As the First Swayvil said, "In the Dawn of Time, in the fullness of folly, by the foes of Entropy, in the darkest depth of the stuff of Chaos, was created the Paragon, to stand, and to fall, in the forces of fire." "Before Paragon there was no time. It was all unchallenged Chaos and solidless form. Yet Entropy ate that. So Hariswiee the Just, a great creature of Chaos forged Paragon to stand in permanence against Entropy. When it was done, there was form, those it shapeshifted. There was time, and it passed. There was Law and there was Chaos. The creatures of the infinite formless void that took shapes as icons. They became because Law and Solid Form became. One of them was the Serpent, one the Unicorn, on the Bear, one the Phoenix, and numberless more. As each of them was slain their powers diminished in passing to another that had echoed their form.. I have felt them once i was freed to. And Once i was freed, the Phoenix was freed to Leave as well." She walks toward Realmer, a slight glow about her.. "Lesser forms of infinite shapes took solid form though they fought it... They had names they could not escape....Swayvil, Channicut, Helgram, Marsaz, Freest, Jesby, Hendrake,Sawall, ancient creatures...others too... they bound others to them and created warbands and tried to tear down paragon to return to unchallanged Chaos.. Elsewhere.. Calmir was created as a place of law as well." she sips..Jurt scowls, "This is all ancient heresy, woman" "Heresy to what? The Serpent, wormwearer? No, these things happened and they were revered in the Abyss when i heard those tales. The Chaos creatures made war and great houses....but it was Entropy who crushed Paragon and broke it. Then stunned, a million Chaos creatures that called themselves lords dragged the stunned Entropy into the gash of nothingness he had created, pulled in hells of madness to fill it and pushed him into the tomb with their death curses. Now little things jump into that gash to retrieve trinkets and call themselves Pit Divers..Little things, like this Lord of Chaos"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

During Nina's Early Chaos History Lesson, Realmer looked back and forth between Jurt and Nina, feeling the dislike between them growing... and his own caring about that matter diminishing to nothing. Jurt DID say he wanted to meet her and did say for Realmer to call her; guess he bit off more than he could chew, but that was not Realmer's problem, he was no longer going to come between them to 'keep the peace'... unless it was truly necessary. "Entropy; how perfectly appropriate. And Hariswiee the Just.... I will not forget that name. And the Primal Creatures, as we know them, are but the First Shadow of their former selves... fascinating, yet somehow not unexpected." Realmer looks thoughtful for a moment then continues. "I recall reading somewhere that Calmir is somehow tied to Adagalasck... but I couldn't find anything else on the matter. And as I recall, The Phoenix is considered the Primal Creature of Adagalasck..." Realmer trails off and takes a moment to bring up the Sigil of the Spiral of the Four Winds and looks more closely at Nina and her 'glow', wondering if perhaps she IS The Phoenix or if The Phoenix is possessing her... If the Spiral does not reveal anything, Realmer will switch to the Pattern, then finally, the Sigil of Paragon.

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt-"I've not spent much time in the abyss, just the upper levels with a lot of empires and trade with Chaos and the black Zone.. But I've never heard that Entropy created the Abyss. So yes... Its heresy to the Serpent. I can't friggin believe I'm taking the canonical defense having turned by back on Chaos....But this is Abyssal heresy. " Jurt points his finger acusatorially. Nina shrugs, "I was but a young girl of a thousand years when Oberon claimed me. My knowledge comes from the Abyssal Lord who taught me and raised me to my own status. That act summoned Oberon. My lord met him as a friend. So Oberon must know more then I. And Dworkin even more.. That the younger ones forgot his kinship is incredible.. Julian never suspected but Benedict, Osric, Finndo, they knew... And you know, wormwearer, that i am right. As for the primal beasts, Realmer, they are not... shadows per se.. they are echos.. they are pieces of infinite chaos, primal power of the universe. But when each is killed it finds one of their chose shape and enlarges them..Most primal beasts have gone through so many changes they are barely pale echos Julian's Morganstern is mighty but it is well over the hundredth to bear that potent power.. But i am a follower of one of the original beings..it has few peers. Serpent. Unicorn. Allaowa; called Otter. Lasua; the Cat. Masila; the Butterfly. Chanticleer the Rooster, and mine, the Phoenix.... Their deaths echo even into the depths of Adagalasck. I felt the Tiger die and the one reborn left Regor. I felt Bear so long ago. I felt Yggaras born as Yggdrasil died in the Abyss. I felt the Sparrow die and be reborn...and recently, i felt Regaoa the squirrel die and be reborn and have the red sword thrust upon it.. And your wormwearer friend knows where the new Regaoa is. I believe i have places to travel now that i am out of my realm...Thank you for the Summons Realmer, my friend. Come home sometime soon... Not too soon... I have a blade to find."

  • Michael James Watson

She turns and steps away into shadow

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt tucks his lip to the side and fishes out his urala pipe. "Well....Isn't she just a darling monster..Reminds me of Grandma Maylon. A little around the eyes and a lot around the icy sharp tongue and the icy glass heart." After a couple puffs he goes on. "So Julian and Caine are married to Abyssal demons... that explains a lot. Not the least being why Oberon exiled them and imprisoned them. She said they lived there a thousand years so their mothers must have been Abyssals as well. Adask and Fey born of the Abyss. Oberon having friendly relations in the abyss is a curious thought. wonder if it was a land Dworkin showed him? I wonder what other kin of ours might have deeper roots there? .. ok... we know the throne has a shard. Good to know... Suddenly I want it out of this shadow...but where..." He tries not to meet Realmer's eyes but eventually fails.. "Ok.. ok....yes, i knew about the squirrel.. the last Lord of Bursain was slain as apparently was his companion the Primal Squirrel.. He empowered a squirrel as he was dying and gave it the blade to keep it from his slayer.. After that.. i don't know..Look for squirrels i guess.." "Suddenly this whole room seems unsafe..I'm going to clear this place out and take it elsewhere.. hmmm Ya know i wonder what a huge pit of gold and jewels would be like at Thin Whips as a sort of orgy playground?..Might appeal to them..."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer chuckles as he dismisses his Secure Shelter Spell and watches as the Golden Dining Room about them turns back to the Golden Hoard then says: "Yes, she certainly leaves a lasting impression. I'm sure if I spoke with my Grandfather he could tell me more about Oberon's friendly ties to the Adask and Fey and more about my Abyssal Cousins. Just another thing to do before leaving with King Random." Realmer sighs then continues. "A Golden Orgy Playground... sounds quite appealing. I am sure many of Thin Whip's patrons would love it. And overall, good idea to move all this stuff. But I still advise caution in storing or displaying the Throne too close to Amber. I do have a Personal Shadow that has restricted access and nobody but you, me and my companions know about it. We could store the Throne there and I will give you the 'access code' so you may enter and leave the Shadow at will. Also, within that Shadow, I have created a Shadow Pocket Vault to keep things safe, though it is currently empty... I will gladly give you access to it as well. And nobody knows about the Vault but me and now you." "So... how long have you known about the Squirrel and the Red Sword? And why haven't you sought them out yourself?"

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt raises the Logrus and starts fiddling with his spells. smoking casually on the urual. "I'm going to hang a few material management spells. The first will send all the spending money to my vault at Gutsedvem. The magic stuff goes to Thin Whips.. The throne... I'll keep on me. I'm my own best security. No offense meant." After a few moments he nods stands, lowers the Logrus.. "As for the Squirrel... I've known it died since it died. I saw the essence pass. It doesn't happen often..Those creatures are tough.. triple tough... But, depending on the primal beast, the people they associate with might get a lot of useful information and be let in on things they see, such as the passing of the essence to a new member." He makes a hand pass and the throne spins and shrinks into a pocket on his coat, following his hand in. As he pulls his hand out a scaled creature comes up it, it is big bodied and resembles an armadillo the size of a house cat. The scales are colorful and it raises a thin snout with large scale hooded eyes to regard Realmer. "This is Treziz the Pangolin. Trez... this is Relmopator. A friend.. don't eat him yet."


  • Michael James Watson


  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer smiles and chuckles then says to Jurt, “I take no offense that you want to keep that Relic on your person, since you can. I do the same with my Jewel. As you said; 'I'm my own best security'.” Realmer looks at the Pangolin, smiles and says, “Hello Treziz, this is Bob, my Familiar” Realmer indicates the Beholder hovering over his left shoulder. “Please, don't eat him either.” Realmer looks into Bob's central eye intently and says, “Bob, this is Treziz. Give him no reason to eat you... and do not eat him either... unless in self-defense.” Realmer turns back to Jurt and says, “So, you knew the Primal Squirrel before it perished? And this is how you now know of its... resurrection? Or are you a 'follower' of The Squirrel like Nina is a follower of The Phoenix?”

  • Michael James Watson

"I am a follower of none of them, though i was raised to revere the serpent of course. I am a companion of one. Or its a companion of mine" He moves its hand, allowing it to climb around his arm, wrapping his scaled tail around his wrist, stretching out to sniff the air at Bob. Bob emits a sense of extreme discomfort at the creature. "The beast was wounded, in danger, from a warrior and its own primal companion. The beast died in the arms of its longtime friend, the King of Bursain. He gave the squirrel his blade, the beast gave it its essence. Their passing was seen by all the other primal beasts. Treziz showed it to me at the time. Before that i only knew of Bursain as a minor squiggle among others cast about shadow. But death of any primal beast is a matter of importance. Many aspects of the new beast get lent to others of their kind across existence. If the new beast is aggressive for its kind its kind soon becomes more aggressive. Trez here is 300th or so of the line of his race, and as such is far from mighty among the Primal Beasts.. He is a shy thing, loving and kind, and not much of a fighter.. No teeth, small claws, not very fast. So not much more dangerous then non-primal versions of these black zone creatures.. But i came across it long ago and have been protecting it. But do not be deceived. If it chose to, it ha magics and shape shifting powers making it the equal of many demons of chaos. Not that the little sloth looks it.. " The beast reaches toward Realmer with an outstretched paw.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer pulls back slightly and says, "Perhaps, before we get too much closer, Trez should meet Kevin... wouldn't want him popping out of a pocket and getting himself eaten." Realmer reaches inside Kevin's favorite pocket and pulls him out protectively. "Kevin, this is Treziz, Jurt's friend; he is NOT a threat or play toy. Treziz, this is Kevin, my Pet; he is NOT food." Once the Poodle and the Pangolin get acquainted enough to not attack or eat each other, Realmer will carefully extend his hand to Treziz.

  • Michael James Watson

Treziz slowly crosses to Realmer's arm, sniffing at Kevin. Kevin looks poodle anxious at first then sniffs back.. Treziz twits around Realmer's arm and goes nose to nose with Kevin, reach a clawed paw to groom it. The two seem to be getting along.. Kevin squirms and leaps to the ground followed by Treziz. The two start scampering among the gold coins.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Well, looks like they're getting on better than most of the family does." Realmer pulls out his Bone Wand, shifting it to a Bone Pipe, he loads it and lights with a cantrip. He puffs for a bit, watching the two creatures at play amongst the gold, smiling openly, enjoying the moment. As he smokes, he muses aloud. "Seems the list of things to do on my 'vacation' just keeps getting longer. But, at least I have the time to do them, or so it seems." He puffs a couple of times, then continues. "I guess my best first course of action would be to go see my Grandfather; he could answer several questions I have about the family and advise me on Nina and Emilie _before_ I go see King Random on their behalf... and Julian and Caine's as well. And if I am to ask the King for permission for the Sisters to walk the Pattern, I will need to make sure I am not making a huge mistake. And I was hoping to walk the Pattern myself, before leaving... only I was hoping it could be the Primal Pattern this time... Grandfather said one day I would walk that Pattern, but so far King Random... and his advisors, have deemed in unnecessary for me to have that level of Imprint." Realmer takes a couple more puffs as he silently watches the poodle and the Pangolin play. "I was also hoping to find and talk with my Grandmother... but perhaps Grandfather would be a good advisor prior to that endeavor as well." Realmer takes a deep draw and lets it out slowly, using a Cantrip to make the smoke looks like a Fire Elemental and Stone Elemental, as he knows them from his Adventuring days. "And then there is this" he says through the smoke as he holds up the silver card given to him by a Dufiro. "Considering recent events in Chaos I will have to have an alternate place to offer for the Ritual... again, King Random's permission if I want it done on Kolvir in the Tombs. I wonder if they would like my personal Shadow, Adagaar, in Adagalasck off the North Stair..." Realmer trails off, puffing on his pipe, watching the gold and the poodle and pangolin for a bit in silence.

  • Michael James Watson

"May I?' reaching for the card..

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer hands it to Jurt.

  • Michael James Watson

Taking the card and rolling it through several passes. "The Dufiro are..interesting creatures. They collect things of no power just for the poetry of it. I've seen them turn down using a powerful Power Focus in favor for one that fit the metrics of some unknown music in their head. A place, a thing, need not add anything for to use it. I once contracted a Avasa of Rage to help me remember details of an event I was peripheral to just to see what I might have seen out of the corner of my eye while I was watching something else. I offered powers, use of my Logrus sight, sanctified blades.. items of note, most of which I owned. What he asked for was to be allowed to sing his life song from a tower in Sawall Way. There was no power to doing so, no profit. But, there was honor.. When he told his tale to the Masoja of Knowledge who wrote his Masoja Tome he could include that he had sung his life from the towers of a great house of chaos. Cost me nothing, gained me much, he went away pleased. One of the tomes i stole was a copy of his Masoja summoning tome he had sent me after his elevation.. One does not necessarily think of powers. If he gains nothing we might value by using a place like the Tombs, it may fit well in his poetry." He flips the card expertly on the table beside you. He raises the Logrus, taps the spell and the coins start flying into the portal to his vault in Gustevdem. Treziz and Kevin jump and roll among the moving coins, jewels, cups and treasure.

  • Michael James Watson

"As for family business, i think that is your business. Now would be a good time for us to part for a time.. You know where to find me.." He extends his hand, Treziz runs and jumps, running up and sliding into his pocket. Jurt leaves the hand out stretched

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer calls Kevin over, scoops him up and cradles him in his left arm. Realmer extends his right hand and grasps Jurt's extended hand and shakes it firmly. "Until we see each other again, friend. I'm sure it won't be long."

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt shakes, turns and funnels the remaining artifacts of magical nature into the next spell. Nodding, he steps through, leaving Realmer in an empty hall.

  • Michael James Watson

and scene.,, start a new thread for your next post

Book Three: A Vision of Family

A Meeting with Dworkin and Some New Friends

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer pulls out his King Random Trump Deck and deftly shuffles through them until he finds Dworkin. He also shuffles out the Trump of Vox then puts the Deck away. He looks at both, not intently, not trying to make contact, but just looking at the representations of the people he knows as Grandfather and Grandmother. He slips the Trump of Vox up one sleeve then focuses on the image of Dworkin, fondly recalling memories of his grandfather from his childhood. Realmer continues to focus until contact is made... or until his head feels like it will explode.

  • Michael James Watson

The trump opens on Dworkin, as a man in a vandyke beard and a dark suit, drinking coffee in a cafe.. "Its about time... Shall I deliver you here?"


  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer alters his Robe to look more like the suit he wears in his Trump image. Then he mentally tells Bob to turn Invisible and stay out of sight. Realmer smiles when he says, "Yes, please and thank you."

  • Michael James Watson

The sensation of being pulled through a trump is strong but some how unfamiliar. Arriving in a bathroom stall, the sound of running water at sinks beyond the wall is heard.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer is immediately on the defensive; he brings up the Pattern and looks and feels about for traps. He also feels for familiar Psyches.

  • Michael James Watson

Three powerful sources are nearby, close enough to be sitting at the same table in a nearby room

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer realizes that he was most likely transported to the gentlemen's restroom for discretionary purposes. Perhaps this is not a place where somebody just popping in would be considered acceptable. Realmer drops the Sigil of the pattern as he exits the stall. He makes his way to the sink and washes his hands then exits the restroom and makes his way in the direction of those powerful psyches he felt a moment before.

  • Michael James Watson

A woman turns from the sink, a napkin at her mouth in shock. "Sir!! This is not Paris! You capital elitist fops can keep your unisex toilets for your beloved France! Here in Vienna we have manners!!" she harrumphs and walks out quickly


  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer exits the Ladies Room and seeks out his prankster of a grandfather.

  • Michael James Watson

Sitting at a table in the moderately crowded and well made cafe salon are three people. One you recognize as Dworkin despite his shape and attire. He is laughing and pour tea into a cup from a samovar, chuckling. The second looks familiar but somehow tense. He smokes a cigarette in a blue wrapping. The third looks quiet, reserved, somehow proper. He looks at you curiously. Something shimmering before him disappears as you notice it as if he was dropping a sigil.


  • Michael James Watson

The severe woman is speaking to a manger who looks clearly annoyed while being polite to her. She is pointing at you from across the room. He is resigned and starts walking toward you

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer approaches the man and tries to look embarrassed. "Forgive me sir. It seems I was misdirected, intentionally or unintentionally, and I entered the wrong room. I saw nothing inappropriate and neither did the surprised and inconvenienced woman. I hope we can put this embarrassing matter behind us."

  • Michael James Watson

He looks surprised momentarily, then nods, "Thank you for understanding sir. I would not wish it known in the capital that my establishment didn't recognize the prevailing styles of his majesty. We have two privies, of course but only the men's is unisex. I'm afraid even though its been so long since the conquest there are some thing, especially the ladies of Austria, find hard to accept. May I seat you sir? There is a table over by the window.. I'll bring a cheese platter and tea, of coffee if you prefer.. I'm afraid this is a Non-providing cafe so we do not serve wine.."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer smiles broadly and says to the man, "Any cafe that does not serve wine is a cafe I will frequent often. And as far as seating me, yes, you may seat me... at that table of three men with an open seat for a fourth; I am awaited. A plate of cheese and a strong tea, please and thank you."

  • Michael James Watson

He nods, and makes a slight bow and heads to the rear. Dworkin pushes a chair out with his foot. "Gotten in trouble already and you just got here.."\

  • Michael James Watson

the third man says-"Darren, we should wait for the fifth of our company before introductions. Save time repeating." He seems interested and has a sense of being observant, and artist's eye

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Really grandfather? The lady's privy? Rather adolescent don't you think?" Realmer tries to keep serious face but eventually cannot hold it any longer and begins laughing openly and joyfully. "I must admit it grandfather, good prank."

  • Michael James Watson

Darren, or Dworkin, nods, "Perhaps, but it was funny...And funny is a necessary need sometimes"

  • Michael James Watson

the middle man looks up and catches your eyes. For a moment there is a powerful sense of great depth and power in his eyes, ancient, compelling, obsessive, dangerous, and perhaps a little crazy. He picks up his tea to sip.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer nods to both of the gentlemen at the table then takes the seat Dworkin pushed out for him, then he looks to Dworkin, Darren and says: "Yes, I recall you always making jokes and playing pranks when I was a young child."

  • Michael James Watson

The third man says nods, "Yes, children laugh naturally since they have yet to learn the vile skill at secrecy and intrigue" The second-"Really? I never met a child that didn't have larceny or self-interest at heart, especially in our company. and our family"

  • Michael James Watson

the third nods to a man entering


  • Michael James Watson

the fifth walks up, and takes the last seat. "Well, now we are five.. Grandfather, what treason did you call me across shadow to discuss this time? I've got to get back or ill have gunfighters wandering into Diega Raks and shooting up the place. "

  • Michael James Watson

Dworkin nods-"Relmopator, let me introduce a family friend, a native of these parts and a broken pattern sorcerer of great talent. Lewis. This cuss over there is David, and this man next to me is my son Vincent, David's father. Gentlemen, my grandson Realmer, son of Hagalta and Satura." Second-"A pleasure" nodding. Third-"Greetings, Sir" Fifth."Ya, you're the one that chased Hagalta out of Adagalasck, yes?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer nods to each as Dworkin introduces them. "Well met, one and all." He turns to the Fifth Man and says, "Yes, I was part of the ousting of Hagalta from Adagalasck."

  • Michael James Watson

Dave nods, "Good work that. I've not met Hagalta. only know him through grandfather's disappointment. He doesn't speak much about the rest of the family but he mentions you and Satura on occasion. And Random." Vincent frowns, "Lets not start that again, David.. You are not staying anyway. " Dworkin-"Dave just tell me where you are at?" Dave-"I've 5 gunfighters as well as myself. Between us we can gather about 200 horse. I've finished explaining things to them and they are all in." Lewis,-"Who? " Dave-"Wyatt Earp, a Doc Holiday, they are a team. Tom Horn, Bat Masterson, and Bass Reeves. Lawmen, mostly anyway, like myself. Between us we can gather the people we need but ill need a shadow walker to help cut down time. I can only do so much. don't suppose father here will get of his ass and do a man's job?" Vincent scowls, "You know how i feel about this endeavor of yours. Bringing a band of hired guns to Random won't make him love you more.. He's unicorn ghet.. that way lies ingratitude",

  • Michael James Watson

Lewis-"Interesting collection Mr. Mathers. I've met the Masterson in this world. He is a general for the Confederacy so a Napoleonic. Not what you found i would guess."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer looks from Vincent to David then to his grandfather with a narrowed eyes, then back to David and says, "Well, I was not summoned here, to the best of my knowledge. I contacted grandfather to seek his Counsel on some matters before taking a long trip. I was not expecting a group setting."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Author "But I am sure grandfather has a reason for bringing all of us together at this time and this place. So perhaps we should hear him out."

  • Michael James Watson

Dworkin-"You were not summoned but your call was not unexpected. I wanted you to meet my son Vincent here. he is hesitant to visit Amber. His encounters in the past with Osric and Finndo did not go well. I was hoping you could speak to him in time. So and introduction now seemed reasonable. a for Dave, he has an idea that random would like an elite company of personal lawmen..I thought you might convince Random to see them. Random and Dave have...met" Dave-"Shot at each other over cards..." Vincent rolls, his eyes. Dworkin-"Met....Lewis is a friend I'd like to see enrolled in Fantalin, as well as Dave here. I was hoping you might escort them with Random's blessing. I arranged for your next Trump call to find me when you were next planning to visit Random"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"How very interesting. For the reason I was seeking you out for counsel was because of my impending visit with King Random. And it seems now you have added to a large list of favors I was already going to be asking of the king. And not all of these favors are for myself. But since I will be visiting with King Random at my earliest convenience, and I will be asking favors for myself, and others... I might as well ask favors everyone I can. It seems, from out of nowhere, I have the ear of the king ... or so many think. I guess I will find out soon enough."

  • Michael James Watson

"Sometimes the universe collides. Random has got in his head to go out and kick the beehives from Amber to Chaos so there should be a lot of lose bees. I told him a progress like he is planning won't end well, but he ignored me. I wanted you to call me just before you called Random and here you are. As favors, i need none from Random myself. And Dave and Lewis need to meet Aries rather then Random. But Dave here found out that a gang of stalwarts from shadows near Cynsure, old western ones, had taken to the Jeweled Road, aiming at currying favor with Azcala. I suggested he gather his own wild bunch to fight them. that's their plan. Dave needs to see Random and i think there is a fair chance Random might react badly if not prepared. This progress has him jumpy. I blame Brand. As for my own favors, i need to speak to Hagalta. He will not answer trumps and is to close to Chaos for me to easily visit. when you have time, if you can arrange a meet between us i'd be obliged"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer nibbles at his cheese and sips some tea as he digests Dworkin's words and the implications of some of them. “The King has asked me to join him on his Progress, so I am hoping that means he values what I have to offer. I also hope it means he will listen when I speak or counsel. I am sure the King would be happy to welcome more family into the fold, especially at a time like this when he needs an even greater position of strength and more diverse allies. I know he has no issues with non-unicornian kin; he has treated me and the Adask Sisters more than fairly. And I know he takes no issue with my somewhat unusual interests. He has given me much and I have given much in return to the Crown and many have benefited. May my words have weight with Random as so many think.” Realmer sips his tea and says, “I will secure Random's blessing for David and Lewis to attend the Academy at Fantalin and personally escort them there; no favors needed” Realmer looks at David and Lewis and says, “It would be my honor.” Then he looks to David and says, “And I will do my best to arrange a meeting between the King and you, David and the need for your 'wild bunch' to counter the gang joining up with Azcala. Though I am not personally familiar with the weapons, I understand that there are some specialized firearms that function in and around Amber and that there are specialized units trained in those weapons. So, I believe Random might see the advantages and benefits of mounted 'gunslingers'.” “Vincent, I understand your trepidation in coming back to Amber after a bad experience, but King Random is different and more understanding of... us more unusual types. If you wish to visit, before I leave with the King, I will gladly show you around and introduce you to some of my associates and friendlier family members. Feel free to contact me anytime; I would love to get to know you and show you some to the darker beauties of Amber.” “Grandfather, your favor... is possible, and possibly sooner than you think. I know where my Father is, exactly, and what he is doing. And I may be able to reach him... even at this distance. But not in mixed company.” Realmer chuckles as he looks around the Cafe and eyes the uptight woman across the room and imagines her reaction to Hagalta suddenly popping in to share tea. “As for my favors of you, Grandfather; private counsel... on several matters. After all other matters to be discussed amongst the five of us is concluded.”

  • Michael James Watson

Lewis nods, "My thanks. I assume you have a King Random's Deck. I can be found at Galaras Galleries. I am somewhat in hiding from the authorities. I have a garret in the building and the residents can find me. " Dave nods, "Gracias..I have people to meet and ill be on the Jeweled Road. We are heading to Diega Raks."  · 44w

  • Michael James Watson

Lewis and Dave rise and exit. They seem to walk together down a cross street. Vincent nods to Dworkin-"Look, I know you want to bring about some reconciliation between my branch of the family and Oberon's but i don't think it will work. Mine have been more artistic and inquisitive rather then secretive and power hungry. My mind falls apart. The center can't hold. As it is I've held it together for longer then usual..I need to go and let the memories fall away" Dworkin nods, "Yes, i know. But your healing will never be complete till you walk the primal pattern. Or one of the Amber patterns at least. I'll get in touch soon to let you know how things have progressed." Vincent stands, nods to Realmer. "It was a pleasure to meet you and I'm sorry i must forget it so soon.. When we speak again, remind me that we spoke here.. I...I'm coming apart..." He runs his hand through his hair, looks aside, confusedly, then exits the cafe. Dworkin-"Sometimes its hard to remember how close i am to the center of things. I've 5 children, only 2 were intended. One remains in Chaos, disavowed me, and went into the deep places. Oberon, well, he was never really a child. Vincent's mother was an extraordinary woman and for a time i forgot myself as i did in Montagar. We had a child that died stillborn. If it was examined it would probably be true that many paramours of my progeny had histories of stillbirths. Ours is a chaotic genetic line and it quarrels with lesser blood. But when paired with higher blood it risks great powerful mutations. Chaos is full of such mutations but there who can tell the difference between stable and damaged? Vincent has a damaged connection to the pattern, to our bloodline.. i think he needs to walk the Primal Pattern, or the dungeon one or Tir-na Nog'th. While i could just walk hi in, getting Random's permission is the right move." Dworkin pours more tea, spikes his with gin. "we found out with Oberon's first brood how dangerous the pattern genes mingled with the Unicorn's blood is. Nearly uncontrollable. Even the second brood is hard to contain. Brand's madness is hereditary though Clarissa's own genetic issues didn't help. Bleys and Fiona manage their issues better. ... Finndo was as close to a Madwand able to funnel the power of the pattern as any of Oberon's children. We were lucky his madness had a vast amount of rational self-control. Sadly, Hagalta and Satura have...severe mental issues as you know. I should warn you that you need to be very careful keeping your attention on your own behavior. When the Unicorn picked Random i think it was not just that he had behaved admirably in the course of affairs of state but he has nearly no history or potential for the family madness." Looking aside he ponders, then looks back. "You had favors to ask? Questions for me?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

“Poor Uncle Vincent; I could see and feel his madness without even trying. Perhaps you are correct that the Pattern could calm, if not cure, his madness. And if the decision were mine, I would also suggest the Primal Pattern; if a cure can be had the Primal Pattern would offer the best chances. Should that occur, I would be happy, and honored, to coach him and.... accompany him, if needed. I would gladly give him a slice of my 'sanity' if it would help.” Realmer takes a sip of tea then continues. “And speaking of my sanity, I have been watching my behaviors since you first taught me of my Shape Shifting Powers and how the madness could easily creep in through them. And even more so since discovering who my true father is and meeting him. And again after freeing and visiting with my mother; she is not like she was... when I was young... she is broken, but will survive. She is being well cared for and watched over in Adagalasck. As far as my behaviors.... I think them stable.... with the recent exception of befriending Jurt.” Realmer chuckles lightly. “And speaking of Oberon and those of the Unicorn's Blood, I think it well past time you tell me more about my grandmother. After all, if I am to watch my behaviors for signs of madness, then I must know myself. And to know myself, I must know my lineage. So please, Grandfather, tell me about Grandmother. This is one of the favors that I ask of you. When we are done speaking of Grandmother, we can discuss current affairs of Amber for which your counsel would be appreciated. Then we will discuss my Father and I will try to reach out to him for you. But first, Grandmother.” Edited

  • Michael James Watson

"Madness...Its all relative, as it were. One man's madness is another man' genius. Vincent has traveled in a thousand shadows overseeing his past in various variations. Madness is cultural. What Hinarak might consider normal and everyday behavior might horrify the ladies of the court of Amber. But he is a black zone necromancer and they really not. Its surprising the horrors our kin can survive. Shapeshifting of necessity includes shifting the structure of the bran and that's tricky..As for Vincent walking the primal pattern...We had enough trouble fixing it when we had a murderous Amberite spill blood on it. I don't want to think what a suicidal one might do if he were inclined. And jut so you know...I will not be taking you to the Primal either. Not yet. " Sipping his tea he contemplates. "Satura....is delicate. She always was. its why I was I was pleased when she met an upright and respectable man. She spent her youth around Hagalta and it shows. She has a weakness for him. A first love.. But sadly Hagalta was broken too, differently. It has to do with the split nature of the Adask. A powerful race. Capable of containing great powers. But heir to great madness. they have an interesting culture, a mutual bonding that is difficult to set aside. And what makes Satura especially effected is that she gained certain powerful connections to the forces while i was away. when i returned She was healing, Verna had managed it, but she took a longtime to recover and spent much of it with Hagalta.. I'm afraid obsession is one of the cultural traits of the Adask that mixes poorly with the madness of Amberites.. " He makes a pass over the table and the jewel of Judgment appears in his hand. Looking into it in the pose of a Scryer looking for fortunes and futures he looks up at you. "Now.. the crux of the matter... What have you been told, suspect, or believe about the nature of Verna?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"I was led to believe, by you and grandmother, that Verna was a Fey of Montagar, and the fact that Mother looked similar to Grandmother supported this belief. I now know of my Adask heritage so I would assume, probably wrongly, that Verna is an Adask Fey." Realmer takes a deep breath and continues. "Others would have me believe that my grandmother Verna is actually Vox, the Great White Dragon, Daughter of Oberon. I was never able to confirm it but did some digging on Vox and found very little. And I never discovered who Oberon coupled with to sire Vox."

  • Michael James Watson

"I wouldn't put past Oberon what he's willing to fuck. The adask were one of the first races we found beyond the pattern. When Oberon was born he was pink skinned of a human distinction. But he grew up when the pattern was new. Bearing Oberon was the second thing we did after the pattern was created. It was a mad time. I was a rebel chaos lord or some might. A threat to the ancient lords. After researching calmir and Paragon's history, and consulting with the Sage of Catala, my companion the unicorn and I sought the methods for creating permanence. As we did. and I've taken a lot of horse sex jokes recently, the last 70 years or so.. I'll have you know she was in fine human form..Obron grew up shapeshifting. Grew up drawing pattern power, The unicorn had walked the pattern with him in utero. He was never without a connection to the pattern. But he grew up randy as hell. Fleece, Adrian.. well, at least Adrian had two legs....anyway. Im stalling..." Sips. "Verna is Adask. Do you understand what i mean by that?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Yes, you are stalling, but I don't mind. And I don't believe I fully understand Adask per se, but I believe I understand more since a recent visit with Ninaaratres. But please, grandfather, enlighten me. I am sure you can tell me more than I already know."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer sips his tea, mimicking his grandfather, then says, "If you are referring to me knowing the Adask are Abyssal creatures... or descendants there of; yes. I recently discovered that little bit of family history." Realmer sips his tea and remains silent.

  • Michael James Watson

Dworkin shakes his head.. "No. Verna is Adask... As the Unicorn is Unicorn and Morganstern is Horse. Verna is the Primal Adask"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer sets his cup down before his hands start to shake then stares at Dworkin with an amazed look on his face

  • Michael James Watson

"She isn't the first of the line... 4th or so.. but her power is great and direct. When i was mad, broken by the marring of the pattern, i instinctively sought help to keep me and the universe together. Verna found me. Or I found her. We had known each other since early in the ages of Amber.. She stayed over on the Amber side when the pattern was drawn, and her people with her. Before that, she was a primal being in the Courts of Chaos. She led many of the Adask races from the Abyss and from Chaos. Oberon helped her as a squire might in his youth. and over the centuries they were friends..good friends...Nina and Emilie happened when Verna introduced Oberon to certain Adask in the abyss... birthed in the Abyss, raised there in realms Verna trusted, then Oberon drew the races out, as he had been taught by Verna to do. "When she found me..I was badly damaged. She calmed me.. Restrained me. made me not destroy the pattern and start over.."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Most unexpected. I always thought Grandmother was just a fling you got trapped in during your madness, then fell in love with... I had no idea she did so much for you and was so influential in keeping Reality as we know it." Realmer remains quiet for a bit, he seems a bit shaken by the truth of things. When he speaks he seems a bit far away and his question seems a bit hollow. "If it were your decision to make, would you let Nina or Emilie walk the Pattern in Amber?" Realmer is staring into his tea but seems worlds away.

  • Michael James Watson

he thinks for a few moments.. "Nina, perhaps. She was always more stable. Emilie...Has never managed her madness well. I would have to have a long talk to the pattern about who gets transported to the primal Pattern and who doesn't. A new one anyway,,I know you have been around her.. both.. the problem might be, for Random, that they do not have as much connection, or loyalty, to Amber.. There are shadows of the pattern out there they could walk without question... but the main ones;Amber, Tir-na Nog'th, Rebma, Thelusia, Diega, Kashfa.. It would be as much a magical danger as a political one. In the end, it would probably be a political decision." "One more thing, as you deal with Hagalta and Satura and possibly Verna. Oberon drew a great many Adask from the Abyss and from Chaos. They count themselves one race, the Fey, the pale, the blue, black, gray and green, and while of the same racial form, they are from different places in Chaos. One of the major relocation of Adask got sidetracked in transfer out of the abyss and arrived in Azcala just a it was sealed by Swayvil. There they spent an age among the Azcalans, and grew to worship Tonacat.. Hagalta went to Azcala when he needed to because he knew he had a racial connection to them. Be careful of the Adask that surround him. I fear he has made dark deals with Tonacat."

  • Michael James Watson

"And speaking of your Adask heritage....I was gone for a time when you were young. During that time Verna suppressed certain powers you are rightfully heir to. Primarily your Fey powers, but certain physical ones as well. Its why you were seemingly weaker then your Unicorn line cousins. The seal on those is...leaky. Certain people would notice your fey heritage from the seepage. The Unicorn can do the same thing to its progeny but has generally remained aloof from them. In time it will be necessary for you to seek Verna out to restore those powers. It is likely she will want service of some great nature for her acquiescence. she can be...prickly to deal with.". He finishes his tea, and waves for a waiter to come and collect the samovar and cups. "One Adask power.. is bonding. Romantically, fealty, oaths, and they can be impervious to modification depending on the terms. Verna may want that to release your powers. If that's the price, don't pay it lightly. Consider that the bonding between Nina & Julian and Caine & Emile was strong enough to last thousands of years and cause two stalwart defenders of amber to abandon king and country at the first opportunity to reunite. You might consider gaining the ability to break their bonds as part of whatever deal you make with her. It most likely won't send the boys back to Amber but at least they will be able to make that choice without magical influences." "One last thing... Paragon... as you deal with more Paragon Shards I think it's important that you be attuned to the Jewel of Judgment. For protection. There is a Primal Beast, Chanticleer the Rooster. He is an original like the Unicorn and the Serpent. His claw is a Focus like the Jewel of Judgment; originally the Eye of the Serpent. It's a fickle tool and its connected to Paragon as Chanticleer was... and is I suppose. If you deal with Paragon more and more you will need to seek him out, and you will need to speak to the Sage of Catala. Good luck" He stands fades from view. You notice that everyone in the room seems to all have been looking away when he disappeared.


Random's Poker Game and Family Talk

Realmer sits at the table, in the Cafe in Vienna, for a minute or two, contemplating all that Dworkin has told him. Grandmother, Father, Mother, the Adask, Family Madness, Primal Beings, Fey Powers, Paragon, the Pattern, the Jewel.... He knows he has much to do and most likely little time to do it in, so he deems it best to get started immediately and not delay any longer. He knows that now, more than ever in his life, he must be viewed as less dark and sinister, more fair and even and he must be taken more seriously and his words must have more weight.

[NOTE TO GM: I have one (1) unused pip from the previous Advancement, I would like to use it now to 'buy off' the one (1) pip of Bad Stuff, bringing Realmer's Stuff to Zero (0).]

Before rising from the table Realmer looks around casually, as though enjoying the ambiance of the cafe, but really he is looking at anyone displaying currency; best to know what it looks like here in case Grandfather stiffed Realmer with the Bill. Upon rising, with a nudge of Advanced Pattern, Realmer finds HIS wallet stuffed with local monies under the table. He bends and picks it up then moves towards the door leading to the street, the one he saw Lewis and David exit through. If he is asked to settle the bill, he will do so without comment. As he strolls the streets of Vienna, he makes subtle changes to the way he thinks, taking a wider view of things, less self centered, taking into account all he has learned recently. As he strolls he also shifts his garb to look a bit more suited to Amber style, but still keeping with the 'feel' of Vienna about him... and still sticking to his dark colors as they compliment his natural skin tones and hair color. His Bone Wand slips from his sleeve and becomes a stylish walking stick of polished wood and metal with no macabre designs present. Satura's Ring becomes a mithril Signet Ring bearing a stone arch with a stylized 'R' in its center. As a final touch Realmer mentally tells Bob to always appear as a White Raven and never as a Beholder unless Realmer specifically requests it. And once away from people, Realmer will have Bob become visible, as the White Raven, and perch upon his left shoulder as Realmer draws out the Trump for King Random and makes his call. "Hello Carly. Is King Random available to take my call?"

  • Michael James Watson

hehe... one talk with Dworkin and there is a sudden emergency pip transfer to fix bad luck!!! hehe... That comment alone is almost worth a GM laughed pip.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

I had the pip and had been considering getting rid of Bad Stuff anyway, this is just fun timing.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

if the GM laughed pip should appear, it will definitely go to Good Stuff. LOL

  • Michael James Watson

"Yes. Realmer.. His Majesty has left a standing message with me. I'm to pass you a envelope." She picks up a silver box and sorts out an envelope. Many other envelopes are in the box with it, presumably unhurried messages. Opening the envelop are three Trumps. the Note says, "When you call Carly will give me a moment to slip away. I am at Atadrezy. Outside my friend Athos will meet you"


  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer accepts the envelope and says, "Thank you, Carly." Then breaks the contact. When he sees the Trumps and reads the note he slips the note and the Trumps of Athos and the Camp away in pocket and studies the Trump of Atadrezy.

  • Michael James Watson

The trump opens into a wooded glade under a blue and cloudy sky a hint of rain in the air. The building ahead looks like a fancy stone and polished wood lodge. Spacious seeming from the outside. Several horses in the covered stable at the front eat hay. one is a striped horse of the breed Benedict favors. To another side is a spacious workshop that has a dozen anvils and forges. On the other side is a woodworking shop including a mill-saw. Looking behind the point of arrival is a massive lake with forest covered hills and snow capped mountains across from it. Near the water is a dock with several boats. also nearby is an archery range with man-shaped targets.. Near it is a skinnery with dressed hides. A smoke house is beside it. At the stairs is a man in cavalier attire doing rapier practice on a swinging dummy. He fights "case'-double handed. Seeing you he sheaths both in a flourish and walk to few paces toward you, pulling his hat in place.. "You will be Realmer. Bleys and Vance i know..and the three of you are the only ones expected. I'm Athos de Paris, I'm to oversee weapons and artifacts of a potent nature while you are in the Kings presence. Now, you may stand where you are and transport them elsewhere if you like. I'm told you may retain a dog and a green jewel."

  • Michael James Watson

"I assume the dog is your bird there?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Yes, the bird is my 'dog'. And please take great care with these" he says as he begins handing over items, starting with the walking stick and signet ring, "some of them are rather possessive and protective." Then he hands over the Mandalay Stones in a small pouch, a pouch of Ice Marbles and two long bladed swords which he pulls out of the pockets of his jacket; the swords do not match. "That is all I have. The Jewel will remain hidden and safe. Can I assume a Trump Deck is allowed?" Realmer asks as he tentatively reaches for an inside pocket of his jacket.

  • Michael James Watson

"Yes, though its not the kind of deck they have up there." He examines the items and passes them back. "He's in a mood. Made me check Benedict for hidden cards."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"A Poker Game, I will assume" he says with a chuckle.

  • Michael James Watson

"Well it would be awkward if they were dancing." He leads the way in. "You have not been here so follow me. Vance and Bleys can find their own way in. Coats just in the door. " He leads through several rooms of exquisite design in the log cabin motif to a gran central room. Benedict and Random sip drinks at the conversation area. Galvar is reading a book in the corner. 'Realmer! Excellent!! Its good to see you. Come let me pour you something and lets talk, Bleys and Vance are on their way picking up necessaries. you notice Arloxedra and Martin in a side room looking over maps on a big table. Arlo looks up, nods, martin follows suit and they go back to their map"


  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer smiles and approaches Random and says, "Scotch. Double. On the rocks. And one of those cigars Benedict favors; if you have any. Normally I'd say, 'forgive the intrusion', but this definitely feels like an invitation. To what do I owe the honor of a seat at one of King Random's Infamous Poker Games?"

  • Michael James Watson

Benedict stands and hands a cigar over as Random pours a drink. Ben says, "because that stunt you and Jurt pulled in Sawall Way got Despil pulled as Ambassador of Chaos to Amber and replaced by Maylon Hendrake and she is coming with a cohort of Hellmaidens we have to find rooms for in the Ambassador's wing. Random decided if he was going to put you on the rack for a decade doing it here in nasty Place would at least not take you out of play back in Amber."

  • Michael James Watson

Athos snickers, hanging his blade frog on a hook.

  • Michael James Watson

Random hands the glass over-"Not a decade.. and metaphorically and conversationally.. nothing Gothic. I assume you have a few questions for me before the rest of the table fills up and I invite the last guest?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer takes the cigar and lights it with a Cantrip and inhales deeply. After exhaling he takes the glass and sips the scotch and savors the flavor of both, as though he is about to spend the next decade in the Hell that Benedict Built called, Nasty Place. "Several favors to ask, to be specific and to the point. I'm already familiar with most variation of Poker; I made sure to learn as many as I could shortly after arriving in Amber. As to the favors, again I will get to the point. Dworkin has requested permission for two men to attend the Academy at Fantalin; David, his grandson by Vincent, and Lewis, a friend and talented Sorcerer. He has also requested that I escort them personally." Realmer takes a puff then continues. "David has put together a 'band of Lawmen', his own words, and can gather 200 or more mounted gunslingers that travel the Jewel Road to off set the gang headed to Azcala to band together with them. David would like to meet with you to discuss his proposal regarding his 'wild bunch'." Realmer takes a sip this time, to whet his lips then continues. "Then there is the matter of Nina and Emilie and their husbands. Though they feel included, they don't feel included. Nina asks more for them; not just gestures. She asks for seats at the council table for them all and for Nina and her sister to walk the Pattern in Amber. I share Grandfather's and your concerns about either walking the Pattern, but if it must occur; Nina. I also share your concerns about the loyalty of your brothers to Amber, but I may have a solution to that as well... but let that topic sit for a moment, my final favors; mine." Realmer takes a puff and a sip at the same time and savors them both then swallows and exhales. "First, I would like to see my sisters; I believe both are in service to the Queen of Amber, your wife. I said I would check in on them, and I intend to. Second, I would like permission to assay the Pattern before leaving on the Progress with you and the rest; I think a fresh Imprint for me and a more 'updated copy' of my persona for the Pattern would be called for considering I am to protect you and if I die there is a fresh copy of me left behind. And the biggest part of my favor... I'd like to walk the Primal Pattern." Realmer finishes his drink and walks to the bar and get himself a refill then says. "I will be happy to debate the particulars of each, if you like, and why I recommend such courses of action." Realmer takes a deep puff and takes a seat in am overstuffed chair and tells Bob to roost amongst the rafters.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Oh, and one final favor, for everyone involved; if Vincent is ready to walk the Pattern, please let him. I will be there if and when it ever happens and I will support him in any way I can and safeguard the Pattern and Amber as I have sworn." All said through the exhales haze of multicolored smoke.

  • Michael James Watson

Ben its and refills his glass, an uncharacteristic thing for him to have more then a courtesy splash in his glass. Bleys enters hearing-"Dave Mather in Fantalin? and Lewis Carroll from Vincent's world, Gallaras galleries? Dave leading a posse against Azcala? The Adagalask Four? And frigging' Maylon Hendrake again? Damn...that's a lot to take in so fast and so sober...."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Then I suggest you start drinking hard, I'm sure there will be more."

  • Michael James Watson

He heads to the bar and pull out gin. Random nods, "Well, lets take those in order. Dworkin can make his own requests. Fantalin is a public institution and if Dave and Lewis can find it and pay the tuition then its none of my business if the attend. Aries will be delighted. He has been wanting another Madwand at Fantalin for decades. as for this Posse, I've not met this man.. Whats your opinion of him?" Bleys says, "I know him. gunfighter and a good one. Fast, even for an Amberite. Not sure what shadow Vincent sired him but i ran into him in a earthworld in a cow age, the Mc Hood realms. Lawman and criminal as is the style in such worlds. Gambler too..good one. Cold blooded and pragmatic. If he says he has put together a warband it will be a messy one"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"David had heard I was involved in Hagalta's ousting and called it good works. He seems devoted, strong willed, and set on taking his wild bunch against the Gang of Stalwarts working with Azcala, regardless of whether you approve or not. But I feel you could use a force of men like what he offers; specialized cavalry and foot soldier and long distance sniper all in one... and he is offering 200 plus. I suggest you at least meet with him and discuss his offer."

  • Michael James Watson

Random looks at Ben who nods. Ben-"It is reasonable to include Julian in council. He's a king now and whatever we may think of his departure, or Caine's, and their wives, we want Adagalasck, minor as it is, on our side, especially if we can sway the Azcalan Adask. My sources say the Adask may form a tenth of their standing military realm-wise. Besides, Adagalask was forged by Oberon..whatever its purpose, that is over now. " Bleys agrees, "And we have bigger problems then friggin Julian and Caine on a walkabout. Though Caine has sources we need to connect with since we have no real spymaster any longer.." Ran sips for a thoughtful moment. "Alright. Julian and Nina an come to court. If Julian offers to swear fealty for Adagalasck as a fief of Amber, ill take it. Nina can then walk any pattern but the primal. If he asks for Golden Circle status...I'll agree to have the diplomats start hashing out the documents and in the mean time my signature will be contingent on his behavior leading his forces on our own Bataan death march to Chaos. I plan to piss on as many Azcalan pyramids as I can before i get to the Abyss and we will see if Tonacat wants to go to the mattress. As for Hagalta, lets stick a pin in that and circle back to him"

  • Michael James Watson

"As for Mathers, I'll speak to him. Can't hurt. Did he suggest a place?"

  • Michael James Watson

ran-"As for your sisters, Dwynwen is a lady in waiting, or rather a lady in weeping. She is part of a cadre of noble ladies i desperately try to avoid and even Flora rolls her eyes about. Weepy, sentimental, overly dramatic, and boring. They adore her of course as a confusingly related Amberite. The other, Drixtra, ah......" Ben and Bleys look at each other and chuckle..

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"In regards to David and Lewis, I would like to take personal responsibility for them and personally request their admission to Fantalin and I will gladly cover any costs for both. Your blessing would be appreciated, Majesty; I know it would mean a lot to both of them, and at a time like this, you and the kingdom can use all the allies it can get and from all corners of creation possible. I feel both could be great potential allies." "I will contact Nina after the Poker Game and let her know she and I need to talk with her husband. I am sure you will be getting a Trump call from Julian shortly there after." "David said he would be riding the Jeweled Road headed towards Diega Raks. I have to way to contact him and arrange a meeting place...Bob up there got a good look at him and will Trump contact him when you're ready. And what's up with Drixtra? Not fitting in? Didn't figure she would. What's the story?" Realmer looks from Ben to Bleys then back to Random.

  • Michael James Watson

Galvar steps over, scowling at Bleys and Ben, "Uncles you may be, but I shall knock either one of you to the ground if you speak unkindly of Drixtra in my presence. She has made mistakes, out of misunderstanding. But if the queen can forgive her it is a unkind thing to speak ill of her behind her back or in front of her champion."

  • Michael James Watson

Ben looks at Galvar and nods, in almost embarrassment. Bleys, chuckles again, "Well, Realmer, she tried to fit in random and Vielles bed and had enough pheromones wafting off her that it took both a concerted effort not to complete a wide variety of breaches of Oberon's Consanguinity Laws.. oh,, But you changed those didn't you Random.. so.. all good. Calm down Big guy..She's a sweety and I'm glad she put a smile on your face. But shes become friends with Helene and the Uriens so expect company some night."

  • Michael James Watson

Bleys raises his drink, and fast as a snake Galvar grips his collar, raises him, and punches him solidly in the nose.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer raises an eyebrow and listens intently, then smiles broadly as Galvar punches Bleys in the face... Realmer has always wanted to as well, for some reason. "Well, I'm sure she was just as embarrassed by the event as the king and queen... once things were explained to her. And I would suggest you follow Benedict's example and be more forgiving and less gossip mongering, Bleys."

  • Michael James Watson

Athos starts laughing spilling his drink. Ben leaps up and puts his hands on Galvar in a firmly unforgiving manner. Random stands and points a finger at Bleys as he stands and pulls a fighting knife to his hand. "Stop...You mouthed off, he popped you, lets call it even or by the Unicorn's teat I'll put you in the cell next to Brand's!" Bleys looks at Random, pissed. Galvar looks at Bleys smiling.

  • Michael James Watson

Bleys scowls after your comment and turns to speak softly to Random-"She is one Adask fey, random. One..Look what she did to your bodyguard? Another has beguiled a collection of gossipy noble wives with delusions of grandeur and ancient pedigrees and incidentally, patents of nobility and access to Amber's bank accounts. Now we are inviting two more and their puppies? They have this one asking favors for them now too? We are going to have to watch the whole army if it takes shore leave in Adagalask. Some threats to the throne come in soft clothes. "

  • Michael James Watson

Arlo and Martin come in with look of surprise on their faces at the sudden fisticuffs

  • Michael James Watson

Galvar-"You would know of threats in soft clothes and empty bottles, wouldn't you, Uncle?" Bleys throws a quick frown and a chuckle at Galvar before turning back to Random, raising his hands in submission

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer stands suddenly and glares at Bleys, but when he speaks there is no anger in his voice, only determination. "THIS ONE asking favors for THEM!? Them being me as well, Cousin. I am Adask, and I am asking favors for all of my Racial Kind, favors that will benefit Amber. Let me ask you a question.... let me ask you ALL a question. And please, do NOT mistake it for a threat in any way, it is just a question to ponder. Would you rather have the majority, if not all, of the Adask as allies, defending Amber, or would you prefer them as enemies?"

  • Michael James Watson

Ben looks to Random, "This is exactly why Oberon sealed Nina and Emile up in the first place. Random, the Adask are passionate and Oberon was too close to their origins to have them in Amber. Random, times have changed and they are not Abyssals anymore. And we are no longer powerlessly hiding behind Oberon. We need to make arrangements for the betterment of the Kingdom. Including dealing with Nina, Emile, Hagalta and Satura and their three children. We have bigger problems" Bleys picks up his glass and refills it. "I said my piece." Random-"Athos, take Bleys to the Archery range and see that he puts 500 shafts in the butts before you bring him back"

  • Michael James Watson

and scene-Act 1

  • Michael James Watson

Arlo walks in closer, coughing politely into the awkward silence as Bleys is lead from the room by Athos. Arlo-"ah.. Realmer posses an interesting question. Do we want to secure the Adask in some substantial fashion? and the Adask are not the only ones to consider. The Progress has raised a lot of hopes out there. We asked Rebma and Thelusia if they wanted to send troops with us and they did. Unasked, the kingdoms of Diega, Kashfa, and Garsarat have all but emptied their military into waymets along the Jeweled road waiting, as their representatives have told us, for the Progress to reach them so they can join.. i spoke with Randal Kylan at Rue Katal and he says waymets from here to Chaos are filling with troops ready to join the march to curry favor with Amber. every road bandit from here to Chaos is fleeing a far as their shadow can let them from this force. Some kingdoms along the way are already fighting known detractors of Amber in the hope that a few pelts will please us. Fortunadas tells me that our hiring a quarter million foot soldiers from their Army ranks, 20k adventurers, and the entire body of 2000 oliphant teams has pissed off the million and a half we didn't invite and they may come along on their own. Money to be had, ya know. CHAD has always had some discipline problems. " Random starts to speak but Arlo raises a finger in a battlesign and he stops. Moments pass Arlo continues-"The thing that Realmer brings up, that I'm going to have to echo, is do we want to accept or offend a number of peoples across shadow. Adask, of course, have family issues in Amber but so does Kashfa, Rebma, Regor, and friggin Italy. Giovanni is raising a cadre of 30k Italian codderatti, unseated a pope, declared himself Potifex in your birth world. There is the Mer, not just the Rebma Mer, that might want whatever deal we give the Adask. Marke, Tulkus, Fingolfin and Turgon are assembling a force of elves, and Elven races across shadow will fall in line behind that. So we will have Elves across shadow to consider. ' Bleys walks back in followed by Athos. "Ya, I got a trump call from a friend that is part of the Warrior Core on Gesheka. Their gladiator association interacts with warrior Core on 50 or more worlds. He tells me that Lords of the Games on all those worlds are considering which side to take, ours or Azcala. Or Regor's; who apparently quietly raising troops. That means there are 750 Lords of the Games who may raise troops among already trained fighters in the Warrior Core methods. That might mean as many at 750,000 warriors that might split in any mix of three parts and start fighting each other right on the Jeweled Road. Mysterious Dave Mathers and his gun thugs will be seriously outnumbered. We should decide if we want them to do that or if we want to outright hire them? " Random raises a hand..telling people to give him a second. He puts his face in his hands. "Somedays I'm not a fan of the Unicorn.. don't tell her." Random looks at Athos. "500 arrow, right?" Athos nods. "Took him longer to sink the arrowheads in the dirt then to shoot the arrows." Random nods. Bleys looks to Realmer, "OK, I handled that badly. I may owe you an apology. maybe.. He turns to Random, "We know that Drixtra effected you and Vielle with pheromones and she had no idea she was doing it. So its a racial thing. Maybe there is a vaccine or a counter agent? That would be a Vance thing. Put Star Fleet on the job creating a anti-pheromone thing. Sounds up his ally, doesn't it? As for the Adask race, we will never convince all of any race to do anything as a race, so we are talking tribes. Do we want the Adask of Adagalasck, and those in the realms near Amber? Yes. Do we want to subvert the Azcalan Adask, yes. Beyond that, its a case by case basis, isn't it? "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

“Yes, Bleys, you did handle it badly and you do owe me an apology. No mumbled maybes about it.” Realmer maintains a level gaze at Bleys for a few moments then he snorts out a little laugh and smiles then says, “Though I must admit, I do see you how you could, how all of you could, view it as humorous... in that inappropriate, tongue-in-cheek sort of way... I was raised as a human after all, despite being Adask.” Realmer pulls Kevin from his pocket when he feels him stir from another of his long naps. He places him on the floor and lets him have the run of the place. He then gulps down the rest of his scotch and moves to the bar for a refill, he puffs on his cigar idly as he does so. “And since the matter has been broached, let us discuss what happened with Drixtra and what happened to Julian and Caine, or more specifically, the Adask and their Powers. First, I don't think your anti-pheromone potion will do any good because I don't believe what happened was purely a pheromonal attraction. I believe it was something else, something linked to the Fey Powers of the Adask. Now, because I was raised as a Human, I have only recently become aware of the Powers the Adask Fey possess; powers that have been locked to me. Had I grown up with those powers with full knowledge of how to use them, when I came to Amber I may well have used my powers in a similar fashion as Nina and Emilie to gain a foothold in Amber, being a newcomer. And if I were raised within the Adask Culture, and if my powers were latent and undisciplined, as I feel they are in Drixtra and most Adask, then I might have made similar choices and used my powers, wittingly or unwittingly, to gain position and favor.” “One of their powers is called The Bonding and it is powerful; it affects romantic liaisons, marriages, oaths, fealty, contracts... you get the idea. It is my intent, after taking care of presently discussed business and walking the Pattern, to unlock those powers within myself to better understand the Adask and myself. But moreover, to find a way to bring the Adask People and the People of Amber together for mutual benefit. And to find a way to release Julian and Caine from their Bond, if it exists, and let them truly decide where their hearts and loyalties lay.” “To that end, I would like to commute my sentence in Nasty Place in lieu of a self-imposed quest to unlock my Adask Fey Powers so that I may undo what has been done and set things right between the Adask of Adagalasck and Amber. And by the way, I really shouldn't be blamed for being in the wrong place at the right time; Jurt was planning the robbery anyway and I just happened to be there when he did it. But had I not been there certain benefits would not have been gained for Amber... somebody else might have gotten those benefits, perhaps even an enemy. And somehow, I get the feeling, Despil would have been replaced anyways... the incident was just a convenient reason.”

  • Michael James Watson

Random looks to Bleys then Ben. Ben, "The Adask are not estranged from Amber, per se. More along the line of them being a common race outside the Golden Circle. Out of most the Amber Sway. They are unknown in most the Shade Realms. That Dworkin kept his Adask line from Amber has meant that the shadow reverberations of them have been few. As our interactions with them have been few." He sips his drink and withdraws another cigar. Some note lately he has been drinking and smoking more then in the past. "None of you were alive at the time, save for Arlo and he was unknown to us. The arrival of Nina and Emile was quite a surprise. Gerard was a child of 9 and he adored them. Many of us were dour, and serious. I was the life of the party till they arrived. Elfwyne, Eric, Corwin, Deirdre, Caine, Julian and myself were in Amber. Evelyn was in her manor outside Ober but i don't remember her coming to Amber during the 3 years Nina and Emile were there. Borlak had been banished. Orosolla had disappeared. Hamilton and Oberon had been arguing on the sight of each other for almost 200 years and it was around then he took to handling Amber's military issues out in the Golden Circle. He has rarely been to Amber since. " "Then they were here. Young, passionate, funny, exciting, exotic. None of us were immune. But Julian and Caine fell hard. When they did the girls seemed suddenly.....less interesting. If this Bonding is specific, maybe its a focused effect. Its worth looking into. " Random nods, "Its worth understanding.. Realmer, i can't let you walk the primal now. Frankly I'm not letting anyone. Now if people break their way in, that's different and it will piss me off. Clearly with the Adask line suddenly in Amber; you, Dwynwen, Drixtra, even Hagalta, its worth knowing whatever you can learn. Be about it at your leisure. keep in touch. However, i will want you on the road at some point. Why don't you arrange the meeting with Mather at Diega Raks and meet us there. While I'll make some deal with him, since we do need troops of whatever description its mainly to meet those of the Vincent line. To the best of my knowledge none have walked any of the major patterns unless Dworkin snuck them in. Neither the Vincent line or the Verna lines appear in Maylon Hendrake's original Heirs and Spares document . Vincent is listed as a suicide and Verna is not mentioned at all. Before Maylon presented this to me my knowledge of the family was extraordinarily, dangerously limited. Once you came to Amber, well, Dworkin came clean on some of it. " Arlo-"Oberon knew all of this and he had no belief he needed to tell his children about their siblings, little lone their cousins. My father knew a few of the First Brood, as did Benedict, but it wasn't till Maylon delivered her veiled threat and the family genealogy, back in 5225 that we knew so many of Oberon's children and kin." Bleys, "Veiled?! she said (mimicking an icy woman's voice perfectly, as if he was playing a recording of someone else) "Bear witness that the blood of Amber is thinnest here. It is mightier yet in Chaos where bone warriors and Lords of Chaos course the blood of Oberon in their veins. The First Brood wait in Shadow to devour you, young king. When the effeminate princelings and slut princesses wish to suckle the Lords of Great Chaos to save their lives, I shall be waiting. Till then, guard your arses, mind your manners, and keep this black bitch dog out of my way" (stopping the mimic) At that point Gerard and Benedict barely restrained Doria and her soul-sucking blade from slitting Maylon's throat. I've long thought we should have let her lose and apologized to Chaos and Hendrake afterwards.' Martin-'A lost opportunity to be sure. And we have some of that blood in Amber now. Jurt of the Voya line, Vek and Shaz Far of the experimental line. Not to mention Maylon's sisters Doria and Yalla, and somewhere in Shadow Desri, who is nominally on our side. Despil is essentially in exile here now and I think with Jurt and Realmer and Despil, Vek and Shaz Far and their knowledge of the ground in Chaos we should green light Despil's plan. If Maylon is in Amber when it happens maybe Doria can finally ice her." Ran-"Son, I know you have more reason to hate Maylon then most of us but I've got a progress to Chaos and there may be another way. You and Doria will have to wait. Realmer... Lets pull the pin so to speak on Hagalta... You have news?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer sighs, takes a sip of scotch then draws on his cigar, he speaks as he exhales the multicolored smoke. "Yes, I know where he is... or was most recently. He is at the Fane of Zilla hiding out at the Shrine to Satura. He mentioned that his other son, Xorax, was also in Chaos. While there he withdrew a red crystal of many shapes. He moved over to Jurt and showed it to him. Jurt looked at it like a dead cat. He said: 'This is Azcalan artwork?....no....sorcery.,....hmm. Ritual sorcery...ritual sacrifice...It howls....it feels abyssal in a way but...different....What is it?' Hagalta never answered, just walked away, as I had asked him to before he revealed the crystal. Also, after talking with Grandfather, I found out that the Family Madness runs deep in him." Realmer takes a drink and savors the flavor before swallowing.

  • Michael James Watson

Random-" He is a force but do you think he is beyond the power of the assembled lord here to control?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"He has been defeated before, so he can be again, but I do not think he could be 'controlled' for long. He is angry and power mad, and I believe it is all tied in with his love of my mother. If anyone, short of a Primal Being, can control Hagalta, it would be Satura, through his love of her. But she is weak and fractured and I don't think she could do it in her condition. Honestly, I think it best his Powers be stripped from him, in some way... but even that may not be enough. It is possible that only death will stop him from continually waging war on Amber." Realmer sighs and says "Grandfather thinks there might be another way in dealing with Hagalta, but did not elaborate. I don't think he is right though, but Grandfather knows my Father better than I."

  • Michael James Watson

Bleys "blahblahblahblah...so... yes?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Yes, Bleys, I believe Hagalta to be uncontrollable."

  • Michael James Watson

Ben steps up, "What the king means is do you think Hagalta, could defeat Bleys, Arlo, Athos, Martin, yourself, myself, and himself combined if he were, say, in this room"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Thank you for making it clear, Lord Marshall. I believe we all here could defeat him. BUT... not knowing the powers of the red crystal he possesses, I am not sure how easy or difficult it would be."

  • Michael James Watson

Ben-"Overwatch. " Bob emits a little shriek and if possible pees a little when a figure is suddenly in the highest rafters and he hadn't noticed it. Doria-"Ready sir. " The black haired woman cradles a short-barreled .50cal m82 rifle with a green laser sight and a 30 round clip. She makes a kiss at bob. The green line marks a point on the ground. Random walks up to it..Puts his clenched hand in the green light. ran-"Realmer, would you say my fist is about where his head would be if he was standing on this spot?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"A little higher perhaps, but yes." Realmer watches with macabre interest as he wonders if Random's hand is about to become splatter on everyone in the room.

  • Michael James Watson

Rand steps back. "Ben?" Ben-"doing it now.. Low Order Magic blocked.. High Order Magic blocked unless its funneled through pattern magic. No unanointed items or artifacts work. Since each of us had our equipment handled by Athos earlier they will all function. Nothing he has on him should but i can't say for sure. " Ran pulls the jewel of Judgment out, focuses on it Arlo comes over and rests a hand on it, focusing. Bleys steps back, "He has a card in your deck, Realmer. Call him. Bring him through'

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer does not bother to reach for his Deck, instead puffing on his cigar and contemplating what is about to happen. "Grandfather said he has been trying to contact him for a while now but cannot get through. What makes you think I will succeed where Dworkin failed?"

  • Michael James Watson

Bleys-"He wants to talk to you. He's been lighting candles at your alcove, but if this crowd showed up at Zilla all hell would break lose and since hell is literally right next to the place it wouldn't have far to go. Don't think of this as an assassination. Think of it as a conversation from a point of strength. If he can't be reasoned with, he can't be allowed to use his death curse."

  • Michael James Watson

Ben-"Its not an assassination.. We just have to control where we speak to him. There is too much at stake. Besides, he was seen in visions from the Oracle of Night. Mine, Vance's and Random's. he just has to know we are not fucking around."

  • Michael James Watson

Vance walks in, setting aside a case of bottles, "Oh..We are there already? Sorry for being late. "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer looks around at everyone, realizing everyone knew what they were in for before coming, except him. He absolutely feels played. But, that is the way of the family, that is the way of politics, and that is the way of power. But he knew all of this the moment he arrived in Amber. "So, is there even going to be a Poker Game, or was all of this a ruse to get me here to deal with my Father?" Realmer slowly reaches inside his jacket and pulls out his Trump Deck and his Mandalay Stones; he flips through the deck quickly and draws out Hagalta's, knowing exactly where it was after his recent handling of the deck on a few occasions, then he puts the rest of the Deck away and holds the Stones and the Trump in one hand, his father's visage looking at him askew... but he does not start the contact yet... "I don't like being played, even though I expected it. I don't like being ambushed, even though I should have expected it. And I don't like having to do this... now. But if it must be done..." Realmer takes one last draw off the Urala Cigar, holds the smoke as he sets it aside in an ashtray, tosses down the last of his scotch then focuses on the image of his Father and exhales while speaking a single word. "Faaaaatherrrrr."

  • Michael James Watson

Inject-Ben-"Oh there is a poker game to be sure. It goes on 24 hours a day, 370 days a year. its part of an advanced training here at Nasty Place. troops from all across shadow, in service to Amber, play here. Around the chalet is 30 or more tables and wall trumps to come and go. You have a card here now. You can come when ever you like. Random plays here a lot since the time ratio gives good game time in relation to Amber. and one way or another we will play afterwards. Hell, if Hagalta sees reason he can join too. though... he doesn't get a place trump"

  • Michael James Watson

The trump seems to warm suddenly, then open. Hagalta is sitting on an seat overlooking a vast Chaosian landscape. He looks wide eyed. Looking around wildly. He sits on a flat stone wit narrow sharp rocky spires around him. Vance and Ben both inhale suddenly. Bleys shrieks sharply. Martin-"Whats going on?" Hagalta-"Son!! Save me! oh folly! oh cursed blood!!! if you are real, save me!!!!"

  • Michael James Watson

Ben steps up and places his hand over the trump. "break the connection now"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer immediately breaks the connection.

  • Michael James Watson

The contact won't release. a vision of consuming blackness erupting from the Abyss flowing in rage across shadow and chaos at the same time. The image burns...it feels like Realmer's eyeballs are being burned from the inside. Bleys grabs the card and places it face down, his foot on it. The connection breaks

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Entropy? Was that Entropy?" He manages through the pain as he reaches for his empty glass, forgetting it is empty.

  • Michael James Watson

Bleys, "Well, what are the odds of that? We contact Hagalta after all this time and he is sitting in the Oracle of Night at the time. " Ben-"Bad luck.. and our Time rates are close, even in our favor. Random, if you send the Jewel home we could meet him as he comes down from the seat. We would cause a scandal showing up at Zilla. No one would blink an eye if we show up at the Oracle of Night. At least no one that would be likely to complain or stop us. He will be disoriented, weak, drained.. Bleys and I could hardly walk for a week after our turns... " ran puts his hand on Realmer's shoulder, "You alright? Your eyes are bleeding a little"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer goes to take a drink from his Empty Glass and realizes it is empty and set it back down. He singles out the yellow Mandalay Stone and first place is it upon the crown of his head then after a moment he places it upon his forehead where his third eye would be and he puts it back with the others places them all in the pouch and put the pouch away. "Any real damage was already regenerated by my ring, and the pain will subside shortly I am sure. If not, I am used to dealing with physical pain. That was a most unusual and unique experience. I'm not sure I want to repeat it again. What would have happened if I had tried to pull him through?"

  • Michael James Watson

Vance-"Ah... Majesty, I'd really like to not be there again....." Bleys-"Ya. me too..Its done me no good twice." Doria lands on her feet, "I'll go" Arlo nods, "So will I."

  • Michael James Watson

Ran-"No idea.. Arlo? Bleys? Doria? you are the experts. " Arlo-"Most likely it would have broken Hagalta out of the vision. But that place is tenacious. It might well have ripped his mind loose. Nothing good. " Bleys raises his hand and refills his glass with the gin he hates. Doria-"I would guess he would have seen the whole vision if he left or not. Once he sat he gained the vision.. Or Realmer here could have been sucked across and experienced the vision first hand.. If he experienced even a little bit through Hagalta's circumstance, he might have the whole vision in his mind"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"I saw a vision of consuming blackness erupting from the Abyss flowing in rage across Shadow and Chaos at the same time... I think it might have been Entropy."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer goes to the bar, refills, consumes, refills again, consumes a bit slower then refills once more and takes a seat in the nearest overstuffed chair.

  • Michael James Watson

Bleys refills his gin.."OH good. Hagalta has a vision of the release of Entropy on the seat. That's all kinds of good news. Random i want to go on record saying that i advise putting two in the back of his head. Its a mercy. But short of that, lets snatch him and put him in the cell next to Brand's. Brand can spend a week in his rooms upstairs while we hash things out with him"

  • Michael James Watson

Arlo nods-"I concur"

  • Michael James Watson

Doria, "That probably means no head shots" Bleys, 'Why is that? You sat there clicking off bolts from that nail gun at Brand and all he could do was cower behind his overturned desk"

  • Michael James Watson

Doria nods, "Good times..."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"I agree... with the cell idea, especially if he can be stripped of his powers. Will you be wanting me to accompany you to get my Father, Majesty?"

  • Michael James Watson

Ran-"Probably don't need me there. How about it Realmer? Take him at the Seat, make him see reason, put him in a comfy cell for a week?"

  • Michael James Watson

Ran nods. 'yes.. Ill leave it up to you. I'm going downstairs..my crown is itching. You people sort this out. Don't spend too long in Amber. Once I'm there I can spread the time out while we interog....taalk to him'

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Very well, Majesty." Realmer sighs. "So who all is in on this? Doria and Arlo already volunteered. Bleys and Vance declined on grounds of past traumatic stress. Lord Marshall, I am sure you were planning on leading?" Realmer pulls the Defender Blade from his pocket and straps it to his left hip. He reaches for his walking stick and it flies into his hand and becomes a Scrimshawed Bone Staff, the White Raven flies to his left shoulder. He brings up the Pattern in anticipation, checking his Spells.

  • Michael James Watson

Ben inclines his head, "I've been there so ill get us there and be sure we are in the right place. But its your call. Bleys and I can both open a gateway to the dungeon that will propel him inward." Bleys pulls Werewindle, looking down the edge as if something might have nicked it, a bladesman's automatic reaction. "Ya, we can give him the big toss across the universe but when Hagalta crosses the threshold he is going to be going fast. Be a rough landing. Arlo, you are the jail keeper. Evict Brand, ready the cell for company. And Realmer, the king can excuse me from this, but he didn't, so as the saying goes; Pain heals. Chicks dig scars. Glory lasts forever. Call the ball."

  • Michael James Watson

Ben pulls a trump with just a moments hesitancy. Doria lings the riffle and pulls a black blade the likes of which Elric wielded. Arlo withdraws the blade Gallis, Eric's sword

  • Michael James Watson

Arlo-"This is going to piss off Vander.. SHATTERBOUND!!!!" A suit of black scale armor flows over Arlo's body

  • Michael James Watson

Doria looks at Arlo..."Oh my...I had heard rumors you were a warrior in the dawn of time but I didn't much believe it.. Black looks good on you..."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"I want everybody involved that can be spared. Vance, Martin, are you in or out? I'd like you both there, but I won't force you. Bleys, you're in and thanks. Do everything we can to NOT kill him. Understood?" Realmer takes a deep breath and lets it out slowly. "I will talk to my Father, I am the one he is most likely to listen to and not attack... I hope. Lord Marshall, on your command."

  • Michael James Watson

Martin pulls an unfamiliar looking longsword that shimmers with pattern tracing. Vance nods, pulling his NP blade. Ben opens the Trump to Oracle of Night.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"And once again into the Maw of Madness" Realmer says as they step through. And Scene - Act 2


The Oracle of Night, Xozla of Zictla and More Poker

  • Act 3
  • The dark purple sky is spotted with black clouds and a sense of sadness. The spires of the Tower seem to look like supports for a once vast tower stripped of all but its corner bricks. Time has weathered them to spires.

A series of stairs rise to a level platform. Four main towers are connected at the top by an unbroken arch. A platform seat stone can be seen. Around each pinnacle a circular staircase rises high in the sky. A few Chaosian serpent priests tend candles. A fountain to the side is filled with water, ice block floating in it. Water flows over the side in places into hand washing basins. Cups of many styles rest in several piles around the base. Torches burn near the stair with the scent of wax made from sentient lives. "I might have expected this.. Did Hagalta tell you he was doing this foolishness?" Looking a man walks over, wearing magically molded bone armor, decked in feathers. "Amberites...Benedict of all people...Arloxedra..Bleys... ah..Doria Hendrake! And you, are Hagalta's son, Relmopator, correct? I am Xozla of Zictla.”

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"No. He didn't tell me anything useful, other than my brother Xorax also being in Chaos at that time. Mostly he just whined about pain and pined for my mother. Who's this asshole?" Realmer prepares to release a Paralysis Spell aimed at the man with the nice bone armor.

  • Michael James Watson

Bleys mumbles "So much for a snatch and grab... " Xozla chuckles.."War comes soon enough. No need to start it here. Holy Ground and all. The Forms must be preserved. Chaos might disapprove of bloodshed here. At least unsanctified ones. I don't suppose you all would let these serpent priests bless you so your souls won't be wasted...Let us call this a parley of foes before the commencement of hostilities..I am Xozla of Zictla, son of Tonacat. Husband of Cihalas. It is a pleasure to meet you face to face before your king makes a rash choice of taking battle to the great realm of Azcala. And before you snipe at me like a small dog, Relmopator, know that Hagalta asked me to be here as his second. He has many enemies in Azcala. and a price on his head placed there by my brother Zictalas. But i count him as a friend. "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer's tone is level and even. As he speaks, he looks Xozla over thoroughly thru the Pattern Lens, which he already had up before he stepped though the trump. "I don't give a bucket of troll shite as to who you are, who your father is, who you're married to or why you're here, but the fact that you are a friend of my Father is of importance to me. So as his friend, I ask you to please step aside and let a Father be reunited with his Son. There is much we need to discuss and long past time we did so. We require no blessings from the priests, we only require you to comply and let me take my Father away from here peacefully."

  • Michael James Watson

Xozla laughs, pulling a cigar that lights on its own, smelling highly of cinnamon, chili pepper and marijuana in a heavy cloud. "Oh...Hear the mighty kitten meow....Are they not so cute at this age, God of War? " Smiling at Realmer he continues, "Now, as I see it we have three choices how to proceed. I had intended to take my friend Hagalta and another boon companion who is here, to a shadow i spent a great deal of time in. After I had sat the seat myself. Now, i think i shall pass the experience for the moment considering the new state of affairs. We can all agree that a war exists between our realms but none of the principles have crossed blades yet. As long as the God of War, the God of Falling off High Mountains, and the God of Dusty Books, all mind their manners that will continue. Of course you and the Hellmaiden of Hendrake will have to behave as well." "First choice is that all of us can take Hagalta and join me at my residences in Van Nuys. Its city on an earth world on the west coast of a mighty realm, with muscle cars, cool music, warm waters and hot air. Its a car age and a jet age just before the computer age. I've a palatial spread in the hills south of the town there that I bought from a purveyor of tasteful nude photography. I stick to the same 30 or so years before shifting shadow. I was there for hundreds of years while i was locked out of Azcala. I was traveling when my father pissed off the High Lord of Chaos. My wife and son were trapped inside, my daughter and I were trapped outside, separately. She and I do not ...get along. I'll give you all lodgings, run of the place, and free access to your father while he recovers. Where he chooses to go then will be his choice. You have my word you will not be harmed in any way." "Secondly, we can all go to Amber. You can lodge Hagalta and I somewhere comfortably and you can see him any time you like. If King Random would like to consider that the Embassy of Azcala, I am willing to accept the post of Ambassador to Amber. Once there i will depend on your surety that my status as Ambassador will vouchsafe my person. While there i will want to see my daughter, Untara, who i understand is married to a son of Sawall who runs a drinking establishment in town." "Third, we can draw blood and see who comes out of this alive. Hagalta will come down here confused, find us fighting and will pitch in and probably die. The War God and the God who Falls Off Mountains will have to deal with my compatriot. And you my little kitten, I'll drag back to Zunula where Xolotl the Dog God will rip your heart out and heal you daily for the pleasure of the people of Azcala. Eventually you will beg him to take you heart and turn it to red glass so your soul can rest for a few thousand years. "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer ignores his jibes and keeps his features and mind calm, giving nothing away. When he speaks he keeps his tone level and even. "Well, we were already planning on taking my Father to Amber and had already arranged comfortable accommodations for him. If you would like to accompany him to Amber and share his accommodations, I have no problem with that. As far as an Embassy and Ambassadorship, and all that goes with it, that is entirely up to King Random and certainly above my station to offer. And I am sure it can be arranged for you to see your daughter while in Amber." Realmer looks over his shoulder at the others and says, "Do any of you have a problem with Xozla accompanying Hagalta to Amber?" When his eyes cross Benedict's, he gives him a look as though to ask, 'Same plan?', but says, "Lord Marshall, do you object?" Realmer is now wishing he had learned the Silent Battle Language many of Amber's warriors share.

  • Michael James Watson

Bleys-"Oh, no objection whats so ever! By all means, make the scene...We'll roast the fatted calf. " Doria growls angrily and Arlo puts is hand on her shoulder to retrain her as she makes to leap at the insult. Realmer feels power between Arlo and Doria after which she seems shaken and stands woodenly as if compelled. Xozla chuckles at Doria, "Yes, restrain your Hellmaiden. I've no interest in kicking your little puppy any more then your little kitten here. " Benedict scowls and steps up beside Realmer. Putting his hand on his shoulder. Firmly. "Xozla, I will give you this assurance. No one will harm you, my sword defend you, till King Random releases me from this vow. However, if he tells me to I'll gut you and eat your eggs on toast the instant he allows me. I've defeated the Courts of Chaos in open battle in a time of war. I have no concern of doing so to Azcala. You chose a odd mocking tone for one who would be an Ambassador. And I've encountered and crossed blades with "principals" of Azcala before. Your brother Zictalas was my daughter Desri's lover for a time. He attempted to take her heart. However, she had relocated her heart, and replaced it with a toy facsimile. When she told me of it I had the pattern send me to him and we crossed blades. Formidable. But I'd have had his head on a pike if he had not fled cowardly after a dozen strike. Tell him the next time i see him we shall finish it. For the moment, if my terms suit you. We will go to Amber when Hagalta finishes." Xozla-"Your terms are satisfactory. I doubt your King would be so foolish as to order me harmed at this point. Besides, my companion is eager to speak to King Random." A serpent priest turns and walks over, pulling back his cowl. He is a ruddy tanned face with bright Irish red hair and beard. Much about him seems like Bleys in appearance. He wears a circlet that looks like it was formed from an alligator's jaw. Xozla points, "Lords of Amber, this is Quetzel, King of Umillan-Zlapa. He is the greatest foe of Tonacat with in Azcala. Once the son of Tonacat, now, no longer so. He will be traveling with me."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer smiles congenially and speaks evenly, ignoring all insults and threats... especially considering the firm grip of the Lord Marshall on his shoulder. "Any foe of Tonacat is certainly of interest to Amber and King Random... so I'm sure one more can be accommodated. Yes, Quetzel, please join us when we depart." Realmer takes a breath and looks around for a moment then says with another congenial smile, "So, what ever shall we do to pass the time while we wait on my Father?"

  • Michael James Watson

Arlo-"Well, anyone have a deck of cards?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer smiles and chuckles then says, "Well, aside from the Family Deck, I do carry a Tarot Deck. Were you thinking table games or a Reading?"

  • Michael James Watson

Xozla smiles, "A tarot reading on the steps of the Oracle of Night might be one of the most presumptuous and hilarious things i have ever heard. By all means!" Bleys, "ah....I've sat that seat twice. I'm not sure i would tempt it. Arlo-"Ben, since it seems we won't be needing Doria I would like to take her home. She is about to break out of my paralysis spell and the screaming in her mind is giving me a headache. I doubt Lord Xozla here would want to have to deal with her under the circumstances. I'm just barely keeping her subconscious from raising the pattern." Ben nods. "Probably a good idea. Realmer? As I said, this is your show." Quetzel has said nothing, done little more then watch everyone.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Good idea, Arloxedra. Thank you for offering. Make sure the accommodations are ready for our guests arrival, please and thank you." Realmer looks to Xozla and smiles then says, "I was only making jest about the Tarot Reading... honestly I am rather in the mood to play Poker. I'm sure I could strip down my Tarot Deck to accommodate the game. Have you played? Have either of you played?" Realmer asks, looking to Quetzel as well.

  • Michael James Watson

Xozla nods, "I've played Poker in Gardena, Las Vegas, Monti Carlo, Hong Kong, and Saigon. Also in Wet Wendal's Hot House on taxorami and in a number of clubs at the Dramaturge. Not to mention hosting celebrity games at my manse. By all means. I suspect we have an hour at least." Ben looks emotionless eyes at Realmer conferring a sense of incredulity. Bleys chuckles, "Well then, you will have to teach our Kitten here. His education in the game was jut about to begin at Random's regular game when this whole Hagalta mess started. I, of course, have played a couple times. " He waves his hand in a circular motion toward the ground. Conjuring a poker table it arrives filled with stacks of chips, a deck of cards, several hands facing down, a bowl of onion dip, a bowl of what look like pork rinds. A pair of thick cigar smoke in an ashtray. 6 chairs arrive along with it. Bleys says. "Someone is going to have to try to explain how the card table disappeared right in the middle of a game... " Collecting the card he counts them to make sure there are 52. He takes a seat. "My deal. lets start small. 5 card draw, jacks or better progressive. Looks like the stacks are more or less even. No big losers no big winners. Take a seat, ante is one." He picks up a chip from the stack in front of his chair and tosses it in. He does a fast series of shuffles and starts dealing.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer watches Bleys hands as much as he watches Xozla and Quetzel. "Please, everyone take a seat" Realmer says, gesturing to the chairs around the table like a host at a dinner party. His mannerisms indicate he will remain standing until everyone is seated... though he has placed himself behind a chair between the one Bleys is seated in and one Benedict would logically take. "The 'kitten' is familiar with the game, God of Falling from High Mountains, as well as many other games of chance involving cards, dice, bones and even the entrails of a living being as they fall from its body cavity. But by all means, educate me, one and all; I will gladly take any tips and tricks of the game... any game." Realmer carefully reaches inside a pocket on the outside of his jacket and pulls out a small cask; the pocket stretches as he wooden cask exits the jacket then reforms its normal shape. He then pulls out a small tap and six wooden cups; he places them all on the table. "Dwarven Pale Ale; my own creation. You are only the second group to taste it; the first enjoyed it... one so much as to magically create more for later consumption. I hope you will all sample it and tell me, honestly, what you think of it."

  • Michael James Watson

Ben shakes his head briefly and takes a seat, picking up one of the cigars. "Cuban..well aged...good ash...hand rolled, not booked...lit with a butane lighter..." Xozla smiles, "Well God of War, i had no idea you were an aficionado of fine cigars. Perhaps someday I can show you the fields of Untola where the finest cinnamon infused cigars in all Azcala are made. Well, Lord Realmer, if you are not the kitten you meow like at first impression, what pray tell are you the god of? fashion? Little is known of you that was not brought into Azcala by Hagalta and Xorax and the later is certainly no friend of yours. Though he has a certain Azcalan attachment to a sister named Drixtra." Bleys snorts, and pushes a glass to Realmer... Coughing slightly, "Ah, lots of people have an attachment to his sister. Xozla, I'm afraid Drixtra's relationships is a sore subject thee days. I was accosted verbally by this one about her and physically by the king's body guard about her. " Xozla-"Ah, I can imagine. The Adask are a lusty desperate people. Quez here has a large number of them in his realm and he made sure Hagalta and Xorax stayed far from them. He said they were bad influences. The Young God of Not Kittens will probably agree with Quez. Speaking of bad influences, i would guess you all know this bar keeper by daughter keeps company with?" Quez walks back to the serpent priests, Lighting candles with them

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer smiles to Xozla as his staff shifts into a Scrimshawed Bone Pipe, he stuffs some spicy pipe weed into it and lights it with a Cantrip flame from his fingertip. He puffs a few times, exhales then takes a seat. "Little is known about me even amongst those who know me, which is the way I like it and work hard to keep it. And what you hear about me from one person or group about me is certainly only what _I_ wanted them to think about me. Perhaps God of Mystery" Realmer offers as he puffs his Bone Pipe. "And in regards to my sister, Drixtra; she seems to have an effect on everyone... except me, that is. I do find her fascinating, but claim no lusty feelings about her, despite her obvious beauty." Realmer taps the cask, fills the cups then passes them around. He then counts his chips, without touching them, compares them to the others, as Bleys did, then tosses his white chip ante into the center of the table. "I am sure everyone that came here with me is familiar with the man you speak of; Jurt by name, Thin Whip by reputation. And at least half of us have met his wife, your sister, Untara. Lovely woman, powerful." Realmer looks to Bleys and says, "I hope you didn't deal off the bottom of the deck or stack the deck, Bleys; I like an honest game." He winks at Bleys then picks up his cards and turns to the white raven on his shoulder and says, "Bob, no cheating. If you tell anyone what cards I have I'll turn you into a pixie, complete with the cute little haircut... permanently." The beak of the raven opens and a smooth, deep baritone voice says, "As you command, oh God of Kittens." "That's going to cost you, Bob" Realmer says as he looks over his cards but does not arrange them in any way. Suddenly the raven shudders, squawks, then turns into a cute, orange and white, tabby kitten. It meows in a tiny voice once, then glares at Realmer.

  • Michael James Watson

Xozla produces a little chunk of beef jerky. "Here kitty, kitty....I take it your familiar can be vexing. Mine is so secretive I almost forgotten he was born a puma. He spent most of our years of exile as a horse, an eagle, a shark, an alligator, and most often of all, a cat. He only returns to his original shape in the presence of the Puma herself. Neither of us were Puma Cultists...I was an eagle cultist when the world was young and the cults were new." " I've heard your king takes his poker seriously. The tale though a mutual acquaintance is that he one had a noble sent on an Embassy to Adzikis after playing client poker? That's a good sign. Tonacat doesn't play games. He spent an eon as a prisoner of Swayvil planning how to slay Oberon and destroy Amber. Now that he is free all he thinks of is Amber and Bursain. How to humiliate Random and how to claim the Rock Guard. Gets tiring. Rebel kings like Quez have to walk a fine line. He isn't in fealty but many of his subject kings and most their people are. As you prosecute your war, remember, ours is not a monolithic system. We have plenty of rebels. Sadly for them, the priests always need sacrifices."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"My Familiar is vexing at times, but only because I want him that way. And my 'punishments' are minor and temporary; they're my way of showing I am myself and nothing is bothering me. It is when I do not counter with a jibe or punishment that he knows something is amiss. You see, my familiar is rarely seen or heard, normally, and he listens and watches, he reports and advises as needed, as a good familiar should. And normally... he only speaks to me and usually only telepathically, but of late he has become more vocal... and mouthy." Realmer smiles wryly and puffs his pipe, looks at everyone else looking at their cards and gauges their expressions... their tells. "King Random takes his poker so seriously that I took lessons in the game the moment I arrived in Amber and heard of his passionate avocation. There is a Dungeon Guard named Roger that could retire at anytime he wants and write his books due to the winnings he garnered during my initial lessons." Realmer puffs again and says to Xozla, "I am sure it is with the Azcalans as it is with the Adask; not all follow the same path." Realmer looks to Bob the Kitten and says aloud, "Overwatch". The kitten becomes a beholder about the sized of a bowling ball then flies straight up over the table to hover about 20 feet up, then rotates slowly as his central eye scans all around.

  • Michael James Watson

Bleys harrumphs at a close hand, losing 3-9s to 3-10s to Realmer. The deal passes to Ben who has shown competent card skills but done none of the fancy cuts or flourishes Bleys and Xozla use to show each other up. He methodically does a straight shuffle, perfectly splitting the deck into 26 cards each time and shuffling the deck perfectly one card each time. Experts note he is not flashy but he his precise and and expert. He also has a nearly impenetrable poker face as befits a warrior who can cause armies to flee with a scowl. He has spoke rarely as play continued though Xozla and Bleys seem to be chatting companionably. Ben-"I am curious what rebellion looks like in Azcala? Everything we have seen since its opening showed a regimented and worshipful populace." Xozla-"Tonacat controls who comes and goes. We who can access the sigil may of course use it transport nearly anywhere. But we have few sorcerers able to manipulate shadow in a way to pass into the greater shadowlands. Those of us in the royal line, even detached members like Quetzel, can shadow walk among the shadows within Azcala as well as those beyond, in the Azcalan Sway, and further, though it gets terribly difficult, even dangerous. Azcala is close to Chaos and remember, War God, even the Lords of Amber rarely went beyond the center, where Ygg now rules Mandalay. Before the Jeweled Road there was very little cross shadow travel. On the earth world i spent so long it reminds me of the early period of Air Travel, or Rail travel. A journey over land might take 3 months and over water 2 months. With rail the trip was 3 days and with aircraft the trip was a handful of hours. " Losing a hand Xozla antes and deals. "Before the Jeweled Road, there was desperately little shadow travel without great magic or shadow trails laid down by walkers. Of course places like Cynasure close to Chaos and Antheris close to Amber are hubs for a great many shadow trails and paths forged by various magics. And of course Unara An ata Satar was once a might cross-shadow hub with hundreds of major trails allowing massive inter-dimensional commerce. Paths from it managed to enter Azcala nearly to the seal, interacting with many of the Azcalan Sway shadows. Once the Jeweled Road occurred it consumed most the major cross-shadow trails in and around Unara An ata Satar, Antheris, and Cynasure. My point being we don't get out much. The people you have met, soldiers like the debacle of the Jaguar Cult and a minor king losing a force of 150k troops, or tourists like myself, are likely to give you a skewed view of us. There is great diversity among our people. " He wins the hand and the deal passes to Bleys. Quetzel suddenly seems to have walked to Xozla's side, "Tell them" Xozla turns and looks up at his friend. "Are you sure?" Que-"Tonacat can take me if he has the feathers to try. Tell them" Xozla nods, " the fact is that Tonacat rules the realms with an iron spiked hand and takes lives out of joy and with religious devotion. He can feed on the souls like a vampire god. Many of us no the method and I've done it myself though there are easier ways to manage power. His rule of fear is what dominated the realm,, not his deep devotion or connection to the sigil of Azcala. He uses the power of the Sigil at will and to great effect. But..." he looks to Quetzel who nods "You see, he treats the sigil as a slave. They are not companions. It fights his control. Rebels of Azcala believe he can be unhorsed from his control of the Sigil. Then, he can be slain."

  • Michael James Watson


  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer turns his head slightly and looks at Benedict and raises an eyebrow then looks to Quetzel and nods his head to him. "Interesting information, but I would say not unexpected; any leader that rules by fear will eventually be overthrown because people that are ruled by fear will eventually generate rebels, and when those rebels reach a high enough number, the Hope that they represent will reach enough people and they will no longer fear death and pain, but will only fear their own inaction against their oppressor, and what will happen if they do nothing." Realmer throws down a higher bet than has been thrown on the table thus far, keeping his face even, as any good poker player would. He knows his hand may not be that good, but maybe it is... either way, a good way to judge his bluffing skills and see how the others react to it or how they spot it. "Raise. This news is good for the People of Azcala and for Amber. It is quite fortuitous that I chose this time to reunite with my father. How likely is it that there are more rebels hidden away, that you don't know about? And how likely are these rebels to band together?"

  • Michael James Watson

Vance and Martin stand near the bottom of the oracle of Night. Speaking softly. Vance remembers his journey up to the seat and how it lead to his horrors in the Abyss. Martin speaks of how Brand's time up it lead him to nearly dying on the pattern.

  • Michael James Watson

Xozla chuckles "Your appraisal of the rise of rebellion may be true but the path of the rebel is hard in a realm where fear is enforced by religious sentient sacrifice. Rebel don't risk imprisonment, they risk having their heart ripped out of their chest after watching the line of their family, wives, mothers, fathers, aunts, children, devoted servants, and slaves sacrificed before them. Xoxotl sacrifices their house pets and livestock before burning their villages to the ground. Rebellion is risky in Azcala"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Rebellion is risky everywhere. So the stakes are higher in Azcala? That only means the rewards will be greater and sweeter when they are achieved. And I believe... perhaps even 'foresee', that when Rebellion comes to Azcala, it will come in force, it will come quickly and strike with final intent, and like a tidal wave that cannot be withstood, it will wash away the fear and the reign of Tonacat once and forever." Realmer looks to the table to see who is still in, and who called, then places his cards face up on the table.

  • Michael James Watson

Xozla-"Mayhaps. But let us be clear. I am not in rebellion. Nor is Quetzel leading a guerrilla force. At this point there may exist a coldwar and a proxy war but there has been no formal declaration. A foolish King led a force of 150K out of Azcala hoping to conquer Amber in the name of Tonacat and they were never heard from again. Where their bones lay only Mictilan the God of Death may know. There are different types of rebels. Some rebel against being held back by those such as Quetzel and myself who argue with Zictalas and Tonacat to wait. Wait a thousand years even. We dangle the Blade of Bursain before his eyes and he is dazzled thinking the blade might turn the tides against Amber and it might do much like it. If the blade is merged with the sigil it might make the new pattern serve Tonacat loyally. Should i find the blade, i may call you notables to take it off my hands." Ben looks at Bleys who nods. Then Ben speaks.-"Mictilan is not the only one who knows where their bodies lay. A Cairn a mile square rests outside Trudana Felik. I brought a force of of 10k Amberite Horse, a cohort of Elites and about 600 members of CHAD against them. The CHAD force commander King Arin of Freestate and the Primus Paladin of the Cult of the Savior/Slayer Sir Reltorious Winteri, broke discipline and charged their troop of 600 against your proud legions. Once it was clear the Savior Slayers were going to break the morale of 150k swords i committed my troops to defeat them in the field. They fought bravely for several minutes then broke. The CHAD troops hunter them down. I apologize for the mutilation of their bodies. CHAD take ears. The remaining 60k we took prisoner we have installed in a shadow near Diega. A wizard named Digan the Ruby Mage, of CHAD, has imprinted temporary memories and they all believe they are farmers. Its been a few years in their shadows. Its a quite bucolic scene. 80k lay in a mass grave that a Cairn was raised over. And 10k....I'm afraid are lost, mad, and wandering in the wild shadows out there." Xozla puts his cards down. Looking straight at Ben. Quetzel steps closer, "In truth, Prince Benedict? What of King Eztil?" Ben looks up-"Dead on the field. His bones lay in the cairn with his troops." Xozla-"Eztil dead? Extraordinary...Sir this information is worth all the risk our gathering today presented us."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"And to think, the day is not yet over. Imagine what you may learn when my Father returns and we all go to Amber. This day has been full of surprises, for all it would seem. And though there may be no formal rebellion in Azcala, I am sure it exists in the hearts of many of it people, just waiting for the right moment to rise up over the fear and do what must me done at all costs. Or so I see it."

  • Michael James Watson

Admin Quetzel, "I doubt Tonacat will see it that way. Eztil was one of his circle of blood. A Prince of Amber has slain a King of Azcala. It may mean open war." Xozla looks at Quetzel-"Well then lets not tell him! Blood and tears Quez, we came here with Hagy to find a way to avoid open war...Tonacat will grab the realm by the scruff and herd every manjack and swinging dick, every Cipactlix and Jagri, and all the maiden blood out of Azcala to fall on Amber.. What a fragged mess over such a psychotic as Eztil.. Lunatic child eater.. I want to find this cairn and piss on his head..." Quetzel looks serious suddenly, ."were his organs collected, Prince Benedict?" Bleys scrunches his face in disgust......

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer turns to Benedict with great interest. "Yes, Lord Marshall, what did happen to his remains? There are many Magics that his organs could have been useful for... and I am sure many Azcalan Rituals as well."

  • Michael James Watson

Bleys looks at Realmer in disgust, "Well by all means Vampire of the Dungeon, build an army of the dead for Amber... I doubt Random wants zombie troops." Xozla raises a hand,"No, Prince Bleys, he is right, There are Azcalan rituals to be considered.. what think you Quez? " q-"He is dead. I've no qualm using the heart spell on the dead. And 80k others...Its quite a windfall for us. Anointed dead. Tonacat need never know. And to be sure, he can't bring his own priests there. That would make a dangerous ally for the Emperor. Sir, this Trudana Felik is on the Jeweled road? " Ben nods. Quetzel..."Will you show me? These anointed dead have life force a practitioner can use. I have forsworn the taking of lives in sacrifice. But anointed dead... I can use. And if i don't claim it, someone of Tonacat's will. I'll claim the life forces and render the bodies to dust, according to our customs. We seem to have passed the point where violence is likely. Will you show me?"

  • Michael James Watson

Ben looks at Realmer with slightly open eyes in surprise

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

With only the movement of his eyes, Realmer looks at Benedict and gives him a wink and the slightest nod of his head. Then he turns his head to look at Bleys, arching his right eyebrow once their eyes lock. "Firstly, it's 'Vampire of the Depths'; if your going to use my Family Pet Name, use it correctly. And I rather love the moniker, by the way." "Secondly, of course you would assume my intentions were dark, macabre and of a sinister intent. Just because I WAS a Necromancer does NOT mean I chose to be one; it was forced upon me, at great cost to my body, my way of using Magic, my appearance, and for a time, my mind. But when I was able to free myself from the Entity that enslaved me and forced that way of Magic upon me, I did not immediately go out and find a cemetery and raise hordes of undead creatures and set them upon the countryside. No; I bode my time and waited until I heard rumors of the undead plaguing a nearby Duchy and I teamed up with a group of Adventurers and Undead Hunters and gave them the benefits of my knowledge and power to defeat the hordes of undead and their undead master. And if the King wants an Army of the Undead, he knows where to ask for it; I have no intention of bringing him one unsolicited. Do not let the word Necromancer or tales and rumors normally associated with that title blind you. Knowledge is knowledge and knowledge is power. Use it wisely. Just because your limited scope led you to the macabre and personally distasteful, others here knew of what I was referring, Cousin" Realmer looks to Xozla for understanding, Sorcerers of a Feather, as it were, and rolls his eyes. "Always prejudged." "It would be best if the Life Force Energy did NOT fall into the hands of Tonacat or anyone who would use it against Amber." Realmer looks at Xozla intently then turns to Quetzel with the same intent look, then continues, glancing to Benedict. "If I knew more about the rituals and how to use the Life Force Energies, I would take them for myself just to prevent them from falling into anyone else's hands." He pauses and sighs lightly. "The enemy of my enemy is my friend. Lesser of Two Evils. Better the Devil you know. You get my point, Lord Marshall. I'm willing to give them the Life Energies, but something must be traded or promised for it, wouldn't you agree, Lord Marshall?"

  • Michael James Watson

Bleys chuckles at the rebuke, having been rebuked by experts. "Well said, Kitten God of Cliches. as long as Zombie Azcalans aren't manning the battlements I think Random wouldn't mind. Ben, I think you should stay here. I'll show the Green feathered god of the rain where the Azcalan honored dead are. I think you, Vance, Martin, and this one can manage his family reunion." Tapping the cigar ash on Realmer's chips and turning to step away from the table. "Well, Sir. Lets trump to Talosaril and we can walk from there. Shall we?" Pulling a trump Quetzel look to Xozla who nods knowingly. They step through the trump

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Hmph. Sure hope that guy doesn't piss off Quetzel. I might miss him at Family Dinner Parties. Is it just me, or does Bleys just naturally piss off everyone around him? Does he actually have any friends, or just people who say they are because he's the King's brother?" Realmer chuckles, repacks his pipe, lights and puffs; the thick oily smoke and spicy smell hanging low around the table. "Guess that means he's out, the pot goes to Benedict and that makes me dealer" Realmer says, sorting out the cards casually but dexterously. His shuffling and dealing is nowhere near as flashy as Bleys' or as precise as Benedict's, but does show great dexterity and familiarity with a deck of cards with just a hint of style. Once the cards are dealt he sets the deck in front of him, uses a Cantrip to remove the ashes from his chips then tosses out a white one, glances at his cards then sets them back on the table. "And I'm sure that one day King Random, and you as well Lord Marshall, will come to me about an Undead Army. So, Xozla, tell me about that Ritual that Quetzel is off to perform. Is it something that must be done through a Sigil of Power or can it be done without one? Also, is the Ritual tied to a specific Sigil, or could it be done with others? The Pattern, as the most obvious example."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"If those Rituals are Sacred and therefore Taboo to discuss with outsiders, we could talk about the reason you and my father came here. Didn't you say you were looking for a way to avoid open war? Perhaps we are that solution the three of you sought."

  • Michael James Watson

Martin steps in and takes Bleys seat. "Hes in a maudlin depressing mood." Motioning at Vance looking up the stair Xozla-"He has sat it. This is not a good place at the best of times. Benedict has sat it. What did you see?" Ben looks up from his cards. "Sometimes i wish i could convince Random that Bridge is a better game then Poker. My experience is a state secret. I am interested in the answer to Realmer's question as well."

  • Michael James Watson

Xozla frowns.."Tonacat is focused on bloodshed. He is corralling the client kings under the gods to drive out and conquer the universe. I've never understood the need. Before the sealing of Azcala during the many wars of the ages I was an eager killer. Over ages we raised to rule Azcala through blood. We did not create the realm. Other rulers owned it and other lines. Quetzel is essentially one of the survivors of earlier dynasties even though he is at once the son of Tonacat and the son of Tonacat's son MIxcoatl. The million gods fought and fucked and fed and life went on till it was brutally ended. Tonacat bound us but in time those bindings were impossible to maintain. Still, we gathered powers. When Amber became a kingdom we were just massacring the last royal house. We took our pleasures. We found few that could match our passions.. so.. Cihalas, my sister and I, Zictalas our sister Zentalas. Tonacat and his sister Cihuacoa.. My son Aztalios and his sister Untara...Poor Zolton..Marriages and pairbondings among siblings that have had terrible genetic power effects.." He lights another cigar...Benedict raises and eyebrow and Xozla hands him one. A strong smelling tobacco infused with tequila and cinnamon. "In the end i had no idea why we did it all.. Kill or be killed I suppose. When I was trapped outside the closure for a few thousand years I grew to enjoy different pleasures. Once it opened i found beauty and pleasure in realms i had once strode across as a Wargod.. Yet Tonacat could not be turned side. When Hagalta came among us it was a shock. People vied to help him, he offered a new distraction and his connection to Amber a new way to hurt them. But through it all, he and I became friends. So when a series of failures made Tonacat turns against him...I had to watch while he was tortured. Sacrificed a thousand times.. Our Adask population thought him a god. And Tonacat tortured their god..When he escaped and fled to Zilla he sought many oracles among the Fane. Finally he thought this one might offer a better idea..It seemed like a good idea at the time.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Oracles cannot be trusted. Nor Seers, Readings, Divination Spells and the like... they are only presenting one possibility of many, and there are too many variables even in the best of situations for any of them to be reliably accurate. Though I have benefited from accurate foretellings of one or more of them in the past, I have also suffered from inaccurate and totally false predictions more frequently." Realmer puffs his pipe and bets high again, regardless of his cards. His face looks the slightest bit sad and his tone is a bit softer when he speaks. "My father made his own decisions and made his own mistakes and it sounds like he paid for some of them on that altar, but I cannot pity him... he made his choices. But I can pity any man who had to go through what he did on that altar."

  • Michael James Watson

Martin-"I was nearly sacrificed due to a vision from this place. I'm not sure what faith i would put in it either."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer nods to Martin, recalling his story. "And look at what almost happened then. I will also like to add the high likelihood of potentially dangerous decisions and outcomes to my list of dislikes of Oracles and such. I've seen more than more man die following the advise of a Seer or Reading, blinding believing in it right up to the end."

  • Michael James Watson

Xozla-"I don't put much faith in them either. We have entrails readers aplenty and its incredible what visions they get from dying people. sometimes it does not matter if the augury is inaccurate, it gives a glimpse of how to proceed. Sometimes that's enough. The pity is that Quez and Hagalta and I have found three ways to stop the war with Amber and none of them are clean"

  • Michael James Watson

Ben looks up suddenly with interest, raising a Spock like eyebrow.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"When dealing with Iron Fisted Rulers, it rarely is. Perhaps we can offer a fourth option. We can only know once my father returns and we go to Amber."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer looks in the same direction as Benedict.

  • Michael James Watson

Xozla frowns and leans back smoking his cigar, tossing his cards in like he may be done. "I have decided that I shall pass a visit to Amber. Mandalay has diplomatic relations with Amber and Azcala and let Random know i would like to meet him and that Mandalay might be safest. Hagalta will come down eventually and I think I'll leave him in your care, Sir. If i were to go to Amber and tell the king there 3 ways to destroy Azcala as a threat It would be rank treason and the magics at home would say so. But here, its just talk over cards. " He picks up the deck and shuffles out three cards. Tapping the jack. "The blood of Tonacat does not mar the primal sigil of Azcala. We know because he tried to redraw the universe. It zorched him solidly. Find who created it and how, with what, and find the blood to erase the sigil. The shadows won't boil away any more then they did when Oberon repaired the pattern. Azcala is just one section of a set of infinity and it just happens to have an inscription. Erase the inscription and they all just become shadows..


  • Michael James Watson

He taps the queen. "Many magics are based on True Names. Tonacat's magic, his connection to deep powers of Azcala, the Abyss, and Chaos are locked to his True name, Everything he has built, created, and enlarged using that power is linked to his true name. Find that name and use it, and much of the might of Azcala will be destroyed including he and all his progeny, since we all bear powers linked to him.

  • Michael James Watson

He taps the king. "Tonacat offended Swayvil somehow. It was enough for him to capture him and bind him to a prison Way in the depths of the stuff of Chaos, and bind the Jaguar with him. It sealed Azcala so a rat's flea couldn't escape and it stayed that way for two thousand years in Amber time. Convince Swayvil to conquer Azcala and imprison Tonacat again.

  • Michael James Watson

He produces a last card and lays it out. "And lastly this is where Quez and I disagree. He thinks the texture, tenor, and emotion of Azcala would change, even if Tonacat remained in power, if the Puma, the Jaguar, and the Eagle, Primals all, were slain. Let their essence move away from Azcala he says. I think that would do more harm then good but I was, and am a Eagle Cultist, and Quez never was"


  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Well, thank you for all you have shared with us today, you have given us a lot to think on. It and you shall be remembered. Tis a shame you won't be coming to Amber, Xozla, I was just getting to like you. I had interesting places for you to visit and fun activities planned. Guess it will have to wait until another time. I will certainly give your regards to King Random." Realmer stands and bows to Xozla, but does not take his eyes off of him when he does. "I may regret this later, and the Lord Marshall and the King may berate me for it, but..." Realmer extends his hand to Xozla, "Well met and safe travels. I'll give my Father your regards."

  • Michael James Watson

Xozla grasps the hand, 'Well Met by moonlight and madness. The next time we meet, if its on the field of war, i won't hesitate to slay you. I would expect no less from you. " he steps back to go. Ben coughs and stands. Tapping his chest he extend his left hand to shake and offers a trio of cigars with his right. Xozla is startled then turns, Produces a trio of fin Azcalan cinnamon tequila infused cigars and trades them with the right hand and shakes with the left. "Well Met, War God" Ben nods, "call me Ben" Xozla nods, "Ben", turns and walks into shadow the veils being easy to travel among this close to Chaos.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

“When this is all sorted out, if Xozla ends up on the other side of the battle lines, I have some dark plans for that little man. And Benedict, I know you do not approve, but those plans do include some dark necromantic magics. This kitten, as he proclaims me, has deadly claws and one little nick is sure to give him an incurable case of cat scratch fever that will make him beg for death to be released from it.” One might expect Realmer's outward presence, and even his Psychic Emanations to radiate venomous hatred, but instead he radiates a calm that is down right creepy.


Previously on, The Azcalans of L.A.

Traffic on the overpass was stalled as usual. LA traffic could be challenging at the best of times. The Plymouth Barracuda's great engine idled lowly, angry that it had no running room. Its driver reclined at ease, letting his cigarillo burn and scent the air with tobacco and other herbs. Beside him on all sides the commuters sealed their econoboxes tightly and blasted air conditioning to fight off the blistering heat. He basked with the window open, he liked the sun. So does the tiny cat sitting beside him.

A tingling sensation tickled at his mind, bringing him to immediate attention. He had not felt the touch of a trump in centuries. Seeking down the paths of the contact he felt the tender touch at the other end. Opening his mind the image of a raven haired woman with crystal blue eyes fills his vision.

"Sister. How wonderful to see your face after all these years. To what do I owe the privilege? Have you taken up the knife again?"

"In truth it occurred to me when I thought of seeing you, but you needed to know." She sips a tall glass of clear liquid, relishing it.

"What's happened?" tossing his cigarillo out the window, coming to full alertness.

"Tonacat has ripped hearts on the Alter of the Serpent of Chaos at the Fane of Zilla. The Cats are loose. The Bird has landed at Cabra. Tona has the Key"

"Well, Fuck...Zictalas and Zentalas? " he growls.

"They have gone to retrieve Toci. They will answer Tonacat's call when he makes it"

"And our kids? "

"Aztalios is with me, Husband. Untara? No clue. " She finishes her drink. "Will you answer the call?"

"Cihal, you know I like a good fight, but this is all such ancient history. We barely avoided getting sucked into the Patternfall fiasco because the realm was sealed and Tonacat was in Chaos. I like it here. I see no reason to pick a fight with Amber's new king just because Oberon and Swayvil couldn't get along. "

"Xozla...You know its more then that.. Its our home. We can go back..Please.."

Frowning, looking out from the Sepulveda Overpass to the 405.

"Ah hell...When could I deny you anything?. I'll come. For you, Cihal, for you. Not for them..They may rue inviting me. Quez and I always got along. " He closes his mind to forestall the argument that would have followed.

"Well Cholla, it seems Zictla awaits us after all.. Pity. Terrible place, but my love will be there and she will soon forget that she hates me. If she will be there, so shall we"

The cat looks up, nearly grins, and makes a neigh of approval that a horse would approve of as well. It dreams of being a horse again.

The Oracle of Night and Hagalta

  • Act 4
  • Under black clouds partially covering a purple sky, a Son awaits his Father, a New King broods, a Crown Prince sits and a War God watches over them all; each is pondering the past and planning the future.

Realmer looks around a bit, then begins speaking quietly to Benedict, "Odd timing. Xozla bringing up the Rockguard... ... ... I know something." Realmer just stares past Benedict into the distance with an intense look of knowing in his eyes and his tone. "Problem is... Jurt and Nina know too. Actually it was Jurt who told me, but only because Nina found out. Do you or King Random have anyone actively seeking it for Amber?"

  • Michael James Watson

Ben and Vane look at each other. Vance-"Yes. Macsen, Dalt's son is seeking it on Random's order. He has the Red gale blade Wayfinder. It seeks out the owners desire but takes them in risky paths. We have certain suspicions. Why?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Well, I don't know where it is, but I do know who has it... what has it. A Squirrel." Realmer retells Jurt's narrative about how he, Jurt, acquired this information. "He only told me because Nina found out... I think because of her tie to a Primal Creature as well; the Phoenix." Realmer looks at the faces of the men gathered around the poker table and says, "I know the tale is true because of a Lie Detecting Magic that was in effect when he told me."

  • Michael James Watson

Ben considers the information. Vance-"So Jurt has a primal beast companion? That explains a lot to be sure. The blade is on a primal beast. That explains why Macsen seems to get close then have to change directions. He has been dowsering his way across shadow up and down the Jeweled Road for a couple years now."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Hopefully the information will be helpful in his quest. I was tempted to seek it myself, but I already have so much to do; arranging a meet and greet for the King, a meeting with Julian and Nina to invite them to Council, a walk on the Pattern, a deal and Ritual with a Trio of Dufiro, unlock my Fey Powers.... I'm swamped." Realmer taps out his Bone Pipe and it returns to its Bone Staff form. "And speaking of having things to do, where is my Father? How long does it take to have a Vision? Or is it the walk back?"

  • Michael James Watson

Vance, "There are tales of supplicants sitting the seat then committing suicide. Was he despondent the last time you saw him? Sadly, despair is one of the reasons people seek oracles. Some people never come down til they are dragged. Some sit there till they perish"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"I would say so, Vance. He certainly wasn't his normal rage filled self. Perhaps I... or we, should go up there after him. Is that permitted? Would there be any dangers in doing so?

  • Michael James Watson

Vance-"Well, madness, rage filled violence, catatonia.. So...no danger to me whatsoever. I am staying here. You however...."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Let's give him just a little more time, then I will go up after him. Benedict, I would like you to accompany me if I have to go; you've been here before and I have not. And I know he could beat me in a sword fight or fisticuffs easily... even in a weakened condition. Psychically however, I am sure I have the advantage. Another quarter hour then we go."

  • Michael James Watson

Ben, "No. I won't set foot on that stair except at the order of the King"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer glances at Martin and says, "I presume you also have a reason for not wanting to go up there?" He sighs and does not wait for a reply. "If I must go it alone then so be it... I always have Bob." The Beholder floats down to eye level with the group then says in a slow deep voice, "I'm not going up there either: I'm with these guys. This place creeps me out." "Bob." Long pause. "This is not the time to vex me. I know what I'm getting in for and I'm willing to accept the consequences. And you ARE going with me." "Of course I am, Master. I wouldn't have it any other way." Realmer pulls out the Yellow Mandalay Stone and uses it as a Meditation Focus. He clears his mind. He sets his Psychic defenses. He strengthens his resolve. When 20 minutes have passed, he will put the Stone with the others and head for the Stairs without a word. Assuming Hagalta has not arrived by then.

  • Michael James Watson

AS you start up Martin steps up beside and starts climbing with you. Ben-"Martin! Get back here now!" Martin turns, looks at Ben, "sorry Sir, you do not have the authority to order me anywhere. I'm just going up a bit"

  • Michael James Watson

Ascending the stair is suddenly like walking between world, a footstep a new world. fractions and glimpses of places and peoples

  • Michael James Watson

Sharp lights flash occasionally in different colors.

  • Michael James Watson

If you focus on a point as you climb it becomes more real but its a sense of not the present bu the past.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Much like walking the Pattern and Shifting Shadow at the same time, Realmer thinks. He sets his mind and continues, determined to retrieve his Father.

  • Michael James Watson

Climbing higher gives a sense of the unreal, a feel of vast age of the uncountable eons of chaos. of the endless places of infinity. Time passes.

  • Michael James Watson

Reaching a slab of broken arches between pillars. a space a dozen yards across and several hundred wide. One stone seat rests in the middle.. Hagalta stands silently beside it

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Father. It is me. It was me. I did hear you. I was there with you. I have come for you. Please, come with me, Father; there is much we must discuss." Realmer's tone is that of a concerned Son. Though his Mind specifically chose that tone and way of speaking to his father.... the other part of him, his Heart, is sincere with the words spoken and tones used. Somewhere, within the Vampire of the Depths, there is feeling for his Father.

  • Michael James Watson

Hagalta stands... "I'm lost.. Id rather face the axe then cause all saw. Folly. Its all folly..." Looking down. Looking at Martin uncomprehendingly then back at Realmer "Your mother is safe?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Yes, Father, my Mother is safe. Come with me Father. Let me help you find your way." Realmer extends his left hand, slowly, towards his Father. He is prepared to incapacitate Hagalta with a Stone Binding if needed... but he would prefer a softer way. "Please Father... I heard your call and felt your despair. Let me help ease your mind. I am ready to listen, Father; without judgment." Realmer leaves his hand extended towards Hagalta... his Father, waiting for him to take his hand.

  • Michael James Watson

He shakes his head... 'I need sleep. sleep of the dead. My Clan...must know what I've seen. I feel your intent..You think me weak...I am not. I am mighty and woe is mine to wield..But I shan't... The help i need is sleep. I can feel the tendrils of Entropy scratching at the door. A mindless beast of destruction. And the door has been opened. Oberon came out. Old Ones of Chaos went in. I'm a son of Dworkin..and i have seen in his mind.. Sleep... Sleep of the dead. Can you give that to me?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

'Yes, Father, if you will let me. Lower your defenses and let me give you what you desire. I don't think you weak; only tired and in need of rest. Let me give it to you." Realmer shifts his focus from the Stone Binding Spell hanging on his Sigil of the Spiral of the Four Winds to the Sleep (Quell) Spell hanging on his Sigil of the Pattern. Considering his Father's desire to sleep, the Spell will work better than normal and he will be less likely wake from environmental effects; sounds, smells, movement, etc. Even though a Stone Binding Spell would keep him better under control, Realmer knows it would not feel like sleep to his Father once the Spell was Dispelled. Realmer knows the need for 'the sleep of the dead' and would not deny any man that luxury... that need. Realmer moves in close, looking into his Father's eyes, now moving his hand closer to Hagalta's hand, still moving slowly, carefully. Once strong eye contact, or physical contact, is made, Realmer will say, with a STRONG Psychic push: "Sleep deeply, Father. Wake not; I will make sure you are safe." Then he will release the Sleep (Quell) Spell with the intended target being Hagalta.

  • Michael James Watson

"Amber.....Take me to Amber. Don't lose my heart glass. " He slumps, Martin bracing him from falling. "What think you? Take him to Amber from here? We could take him to the Castle trump. Or Vulsar.. That card brings him to a med tech group. They could put him in stasis. Or... call Arlo. he can put anyone into a cell in the dungeons. They are magically protected from a prisoner harming themselves or others. He could put him right into Brand's cell."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Call Arlo; now. Quickest and safest; for everyone involved. We can consider medical needs and different accommodations later." Realmer searches Hagalta for his Heart Stone... surely the red crystal he showed him at the Fane of Zilla. Once found, Realmer will put it it the 'safe pocket' within his Robes/Garb. Realmer rests his hand on his Father's brow and implants a Psychic Imperative/Hypnotic Suggestion: "Sleep deeply and soundly, Father. You are safe. When you wake, you will feel refreshed; as though you have slept a thousand days and nights." Realmer looks to Martin. "Do it."

  • Michael James Watson

When you pick up the glass heart you get a sudden and overwhelming flash of a series of instances from Hagalta's life all overshadowed by repeated sacrifices on different alters on top of pyramids with various sizes of watching crowds. A pain where the knives cut and a view of him watching his beating heart put on a fire to cook over and over. When the moment passes you see Martin with and Open Trump. Arlo stands straddling the portal reaching toward Hagalta and Martin starts moving him. Random, Brand, and Flora stand behind him. Arlo grasps an arm and Hagalta spins teleportally and vanishes. Arlo-"Done. He is in Brand's room and the pattern is holding him asleep. Are you both coming across?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer shakes his head to Arlo. "Go ahead, Martin. I will get Benedict and Vance. Plus... I need a little time to myself. Oh, and thank you; for standing with me when no one else would. It is appreciated and will be remembered." Realmer moves his Bone Staff to his left hand and extends his right to Martin. He will shake it firmly, if he accepts. "And if you would, wait a moment before leaving; I'd like to get a few step away from the top before being left alone... this place creeps me out. Realmer turns and moves swiftly to the stairs and begins his descent; he only slows his pace once he is a score of step or more away from the top. He does not look back. Once alone, he thinks of all that has happened and the choices he has made. He thinks about his Father and Mother... his Grandfather and Grandmother.... Once well down the steps, he draws out Dworkin's Trump and tries to make contact with his Grandfather. He knows it will be difficult, considering the 'distance'. He focuses his Psyche through the Mandalay Stones to boost his Psyche then stares at the image of Dworkin and attempts to make contact.

  • Michael James Watson

After shaking hands Martin watches you steps down the stair and waits. Turning to the Trump gate he passes his hand over the card, closing the gate, Arlo's foot remaining with him in Amber. Looking about Martin steps over to the Seat, inhales deeply, exhales and sits.

  • Michael James Watson

Dworkin answers almost immediately. "Realmer....What happened?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"I was ambushed by King Random. A powerful group of Random's finest and I tried to bring Hagalta to us... we caught him in the midst of a Vision at the Oracle of Night. We went there, I am there now... Hagalta is in Brand's cell beneath the Pattern. I'm not sure if I feel relieved or betrayed. Just thought you should know. I should be back in Amber shortly... relatively speaking." Realmer leaves the contact open in case Dworkin has anything to say. Realmer's thoughts are many, but not scattered.

  • Michael James Watson

"Random is a master of misdirection. Take your time but don't walk the whole way. I'll investigate Hagalta from afar and I'll speak with him when you get here."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"One last thing of note; I have his Heart Stone... and his missing eye. We'll talk soon." Realmer breaks contact and puts the Trump back up the same sleeve in the same pocket as before... may need to keep it handy. Realmer walks the rest of the way down, ordering his tasks and desires in his mind before reaching bottom... so much to do. Realmer wonders if there is any of his ale left on the table... he could use a stout drink about now.

  • Michael James Watson

Vance and Ben are playing gin at the poker table when you arrive. Ben-"Did you find him? Where's martin?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"We found him. He's in Brand's cell now, sleeping the sleep of the dead. I told Martin to go back to Amber through Arlo's Trump, I left quickly so as to not be alone up there. Is there any of my ale left?" Realmer looks over the table and nudges the cask if it is still there.

  • Michael James Watson

There is. Ben collects the cards out of a sense of order.

  • Michael James Watson

Vance-'The sooner we leave the better. This has been a strange enough encounter without the scenery. Xozla was and interesting character...."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer fills his cup from earlier, drinks deeply then drains the rest of the cask in the cup and repeats the process. Then he puts the cask and cups back into his pocket.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Indeed he was. Still not sure if I like him or not. Still, most likely will have to kill him one day. Best not to dwell on it. Nice armor, though. Make a nice trophy. Back to Random's Poker Game or off to Amber? King Random was in Amber for the arrival of my Father." Realmer looks to Benedict and Vance, then back towards the stairs. "I think we should leave the table here... makes a nice addition to the place."

  • Michael James Watson

Even Ben chuckles.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer draws out his new Trump of Atadrexy and begins concentrating. "Atadrexy; I need to get my poodle at the very least." Realmer waits for Vance and Benedict to make contact with him, then he steps through.

  • Michael James Watson

Ben and Vance step through and start toward the door. Realmer feel a Trump contact

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer puts away the Trump in his hand, then attempts to identify what ever he can about the type of Trump contact to give him whatever advantage possible, then he lets the contact in cautiously.

  • Michael James Watson

It feels like an Amber Trump

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

He lets it in cautiously, guard up. "Yes? Who calls?"

  • Michael James Watson

"Arloxedra.. Is Martin with you?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"No. I thought he came back via the Trump to you." Realmer feels a chill up his spine and the hairs on the back of his neck rise.

  • Michael James Watson

"No, he broke contact after you started down. We have not been able to reach him'

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Bugbear Bladders! Of course something like this had to happen on my watch. I have a feeling he is still up there. Do you want to pull me through and go with me or meet me there?" Realmer asks as he reaches for his Trump Deck and immediately starts shuffling, seeking out the Oracle of Night card.

  • Michael James Watson

"we'll meet you there. " He breaks contact


Fortunadas, Jeremy Fairhand and Crown Prince Martin

  • Act 5
  • As Realmer arrives at the Trump Site for the Oracle of Night, he does not bother to wait for the others to arrive; he immediately heads for the steps at maximum speed. Realmer thinks to himself in that intense self deprecating way that he does at times. ~Fuck me, fuck me, fuck me, fuck me! I can't believe I botched this up so badly.~
  • But Realmer is not running, he is flying; his Robe sensed his need for speed and provided it. Realmer hovers about 6 inches off the ground and appears to be standing upright and leaning forward slightly, and he is moving forward at great speeds, faster than any normal man or beast could attain. ~My first 'command' and I made the worst mistake possible; I left a man behind. I should have made sure he had left before I did.~
  • When he reaches the stairs, he ascends with intense focus; Realmer does not bother to pay attention anything other than the steps in front of him... and at the speed he is moving, it is probably best that he does. ~I should have made sure! I should have made him leave first. I could have been less concerned with my own comfort and safety. I was in command; the men come first. Maybe I do deserve a long sentence in Nasty Place.~
  • Michael James Watson

Reaching the top in a hurried pace he sees three people. One kneeling, cradling a second. The third, standing cross armed is in fox browns with a brown cavalier hat with feathers. He has a rapier on his hip and an ornate wizards staff in his hand. The kneeling man looks like a withered ancient wizard, a emaciated Gandalf type, long beard, magical items dangling. An unwizardly broadsword on his hip. He is doing magic around the second ma, Martin, who is unconscious in his arms. The fox brown dressed man looks at you as you come up. He goes on guard, drawing his rapier point forward, Letting the wizard's staff drop into the wizard's hand. Fox Fop says, "Stand and deliver... I protect all on this place from all foemen. If you be come for a fortune to be read, seek the Hepplewhaite Circus or wait your turn!"


  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Addressing the Fop: "I am Lord Relmopator of Amber; that man" points at Martin "is a friend... and my responsibility until he his returned safely to his Father. Others from Amber will be here soon; they're with me. Thank you for watching over him. Will you please stand aside so I may attend to my friend." Realmer moves past the Fop, regardless if he 'allows' it or not. If he tries to get in the way, Realmer will use the flying speed of the Robe to get him past/around/over him in order to get to Martin. Addressing the Ancient Wizard: "Wizened Wizard" Realmer bows his head respectfully, "What have you learned of my friend's condition?" Realmer almost brings up the Pattern, but realizes that may not be wise up here. He uses his medical knowledge first to observe his condition, including checking his pulse and such physically. Then he will very carefully make Psychic contact, but just light enough to 'scan' Martin's Psyche passively, to check his Psychic condition/mental health.

  • Michael James Watson

The fox fob does not stand aside. He puts the tip in line with your solar plexus. Looking down Realmer sees pattern like engraving in his magical sense running up and down the blade though it is not the pattern of Amber. The robe seems willing to tangle the blade tip but on contact leaps back in pain, echoing a fear of its powers unraveling. "Oh! Yes.." Moving the blade to guard, hindering your passage a moment before stepping back. " We have met, haven't we. Duke Fortunadas of Wall, Thrice Crowned Bard, and the second of CHAD. This is also my friend and my traveling companion. He summoned me when he finished sitting this abysmal construct.. . You were the one they gave the Embassy to..The one i thought looked like a fitting suitor for Lady Vonnilia...."

  • Michael James Watson

The wizard looks up and meets Realmer's eyes. Unbidden he slams his defenses up but fears this dark wizard may have seen much of his history before his defenses either stopped the intrusion or the wizard retracted an automatic effect. "He is unconscious, and in what I would only call a 'Swoon'. Who knew that the Crown Prince of Amber would be so affected to have the vapors..He should awake momentarily. Fort, you called me for a child with a panic attack? I'll leave this buttercup to your tender mercies..You have the tender hand after all." Standing he takes your measure.. "Lord Relmopator, son of Hagalta and Satura, children of Dworkin...My trip would have been an annoyance and a waste of my time and attention if it were not for meeting you.. I am Archmage Jeremy Lockpick Fairhand, an associate of CHAD if not properly a member.. Consider an invitation extended should you wish to speak of the forces at play." he does not extend a hand and looking at his, tattooed and be-ringed, you are not sure you would have grasped it if you had.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer bows to Jeremy and says, "Archmage Fairhand; it is always to pleasure to meet a fellow Practitioner of the Arcane Arts. I gladly accept your invitation and when time permits I will surely seek you out; it is always good to share a few secrets and get the view point and opinions of fellow Practitioners." Realmer looks to Martin, "I'll take charge of Martin from here. Thank you both for your timely arrival and action. I will be certain to mention it to King Random." Realmer leans down over Martin. "Martin? Wake up." Realmer does not shout but speaks just slightly louder than conversational tones.

  • Michael James Watson

Jeremy turns as if dismissing the whole scene as beyond his interest. He walks to the seat and looks it over carefully. 'I stand corrected. Seeing this is enough to have made the trip. Such craftsmanship. Such art.. " he produces a crystal ball a bit larger then his hand and sets it on the stone. Producing a ferret he slits its throat expertly and coats the ball with blood, blood pooling on the seat. The Ball glows with a dark purple black light. Fort shakes his head, "Jeremy, there is a reason we don't invite you to family gatherings.. No bloodletting." He looks up, raising the ball, looking deeply into it as the blood dries and flakes away. "We are in Amber now. That may change, Foxmate" He steps off the edge, plummets, shifts to a black vulture and flies off toward Zilla. Fort sighs..."One would think he came from a broken family. But not.. Not till he broke it according to his son Venki." Sheathing his blade he kneels beside Martin with you. "Lets not be concerned about the jurisdiction of care sir. He will need us both" Martin slowly opens his eyes.. Smiling, "At least now I know.."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer helps Fort get Martin to his feet slowly and carefully. "Now you know what, Martin?" Realmer asks, steadying him once he is on his feet.

  • Michael James Watson

Martin-"That I'll never be king......"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"That must be an incredible relief. How are you feeling? OK to walk?"

  • Michael James Watson

Martin looks up, trying to stand, weak kneed. "i..think.. I made a mistake..I thought how could I pass up the chance, left alone there.. But.. I've walked many paths... rode shadow like a wildman...I've stood at the Abyss and looked in. I've stood beside the High Lord of Chaos. I thought myself.....worldly.....wise in the ways above the waves..." He looks at Realmer, a man he knows from a few family dinners and a few court functions, then to Fort, whom he has traveled in Shadow and stood to battle with. "It's like Elayne is fond of saying.....I am an egg...not an omelet...I'm not a finished thing... and to become a fit Prince of Amber...I must suffer and learn....I must rule....somewhere. So.. ." He straighten himself up, shakes off hands. "So i need to put my experiences at nasty Place to work and conquer someplace.. Fort? I need a cadre of commanders and a bunch of drill sergeants for the Army i plan to raise in shadow. Price is no object" Fort nods, "No problem sir! If price is no object I know just the guys."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

“Well, Martin, it looks and sounds like any side effects of the Vision have worn off. Good.” Realmer's concerned and friendly tone disappears. “I need to have some words with you.” “What in All the Hells were you thinking? I told you to go through to Arlo after you covered my back. And what did you do? You disobeyed my orders. You decided to go off on your own. You could have died... or worse. If I had but the tiniest inkling that you were going to pull something like that, I would have pushed you through the Trump Gate... and believe me... I would have found a way.” “You might be able to pull that 'you don't have the authority' Troll Shite with Benedict, and others, for whatever reason... but not with me, not now, not ever. I DO have the authority. You volunteered to join ME on MY mission given by the King; that means _ I _ am in command and I do have the authority. Even Benedict deferred to me... mostly. I must write up a Reprimand for him and Vance.” “You should know better, Martin. Especially since you are a Graduate of Nasty Place, you should definitely know better. I have never attended Nasty Place or had any formal military training, and I know better. A commander is responsible for the men and women under his command and will be held accountable by his or her commanding officer... or King, for anything that happens to those under his command. If anything had happened to you it would have been on my head. But more than that, it would have been on my soul.” “After we talk to King Random about this, if I still have the Authority of a Commander and the right to issue Punishment, I will recommend a 10 year sentence in Nasty Place.... for both of us. I screwed up too; my actions allowed for an opportunity for a man to be left behind because I was more concerned with my own safety, and not yours. It won't happen again. And neither will you disobeying my orders. Until you are safely returned to the King, you are my responsibility and you will follow my orders; your raising of an army and conquest will have to wait. I do not care who you are or who your father is... when you agree to join me, you agree to follow my orders. Do you understand me, Martin?” Realmer's ass-chewing of Martin is not shouted or even conveyed with a raised voice, but it is certainly impassioned. The is no anger in his voice; he is not speaking through gritted teeth or overemphasizing words or pausing dramatically. He seems calm and is speaking in a mostly even tone. But the question at the end of his ass-chewing is smartly directed at Martin with Realmer purposefully looking into his eyes. Realmer waits for verbal confirmation from Martin.

  • Michael James Watson

Martin chuckles, turns, and sits again

  • Michael James Watson

just kidding...

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

You got me!!!

  • Michael James Watson

that would have been funny though!

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

 no kidding. could have taken the game in a whole new direction

  • Michael James Watson

Martin chuckles.. "Never been to Nasty Place? never served in a military? ..and you presume to tell me, who has literally bleed in the war for Amber, what is right and wrong in a command situation? Do you think any barking of yours is going to make me regret what I did? I've stood to battle for Amber! I stood at Patternfall and watched the Unicorn's horn touch my father and knelt among my uncles. I've stood at the side of the Queen of Rebma as a cupbearer before you were born. I was rocked to sleep in my shell by the woman who is now Amber's Queen! IF you do not like my telling you that you don't have the authority to tell me when to piss then that's your personal problem. I came here with Vance and if i was inclined to obey anyone's order it would be his. As for Benedict deferring to you, that gives me more pause to consider your tantrum then any perceived authority you may think you have. Besides, am about to have the King of Amber throw a tantrum at me. There is a story about something my father once told Doria. She was charged with high crimes and he said to her, 'Doria, I may have to kill a brother in the next few minutes. I'll worry about imprisoning a niece tomorrow. Kingship is all about setting priorities'" He straightens his attire, "Now..If my father orders me to a refresher course at Nasty Place i will attend. Especially if you end up there as well. If you think you have the caviar to survive it. In fact i may ask to attend again for the advanced training I've been avoiding. During every break there is a bell you may ring to opt out. I'll make sure your cot is near it. But what i saw is that it is time i begin a proper education in rulership if I am ever to be a worth Crown Prince.. Now...I have business to attend to and its as far east from here as one may go." He withdraws his trump of the king, a direct calling card. "Oh, once i have my army, i could uses a commander of mages. If you think you have the caviar for it. " He disappears suddenly drawn into the card.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer sighs. "I dislike not being able to rebutt... but I am getting used to it. Fortunadas. Jeremy. Again, thank you both. I am sure our paths will cross again." Realmer bows to them then withdraws Arlo's Trump and focuses to make contact.

The Squirrel and The Pangolin at The Primal Pattern of Amber

  • Michael James Watson

Arlo- "Hello. I gather things are sorted out? Jeremy's imp was just here. I'm not wild about imps running around the castle. Bad enough to have so many cousins"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Yes, things are sorted out. Martin just Trumped to King Random. You're in Amber? Is Random? I do need to go back to the Hunting Lodge to get Kevin, but I must report to King Random as soon as possible... once Martin is done getting his ass chewed off, I will be next in line."

  • Michael James Watson

Arlo-"Come ahead now. I want to show you something"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer reaches for Arlo's hand.

  • Michael James Watson

He brings you through to a flat plain with an ancient tree. to onside a hill that has a large cave mouth. Above is the sea, as if the water went upwards. Turning he sees the Pattern of Amber, more vibrant then ever. Seeming colorful but unusually so. Realmer realizes he is seeing the Primal Pattern. Sitting in the sent is a Squirrel. It wears a little tricorner hat and has a knife on a belt around its waist. It sits on its haunches in the dot of the center of the pattern. Arms crossed, looking stern. "I was about to Trump Random but i didn't want to startle it when you called."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer stares at the Squirrel and the 'knife' on his belt. When he speaks, it is softly but not whispered. He addresses Arlo but is still looking at the Squirrel. "My first question should be; what are YOU doing HERE, Arlo?... but later. I think I know who... or what that Squirrel is..." [Is the Squirrel standing ON the Pattern? Or in the spaces between the lines?] Realmer approaches the closest edge of the Primal Pattern without touching it and Psychically 'bows' to It, the Primal Pattern. Then Realmer looks at the Squirrel and physically bows to it. Then addresses it in a friendly and formal tone, as he would any Ambassador from another land. "Hello. My name is Realmer. Welcome to Amber. How may I be of service to you?"

  • Michael James Watson

The animal is standing at the very end, from where one teleports. "Well, I'm on Pattern Guard Duty at the moment. It just showed up a few moments ago. Walked right across the pattern to the center when i tried approaching it. Ah...You aren't bleeding are you by chance?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer turns his head to look at Arlo then looks himself over while saying, "Not that I am aware of... appears not. What have you in mind?" Then turns back to look at the Silent Squirrel.

  • Michael James Watson

"Well, Cat is in the library. The Unicorn is in Arden. and sadly, the only other primal i know the location of is the Butterfly, who teases around Doria. I happen to know Cat and Squirrel are not friends. An d i can't summon the unicorn"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Well... to the best of my knowledge, I can't summon any Primal either. And the only one I am aware that I know is the Pangolin..." Realmer sighs. "That means contacting Jurt. Considering where we are, 'that decision is way above my pay grade', as Bill Roth would say. Hey Bob! You wouldn't happen to be a Primal in disguise, are you? Something Grandfather never told me?" Realmer chuckles then stops suddenly. Realmer's head tilts to one side, he holds up a hand slowly, with his index finger extended in the 'wait a minute' gesture. "Grandmother." Is all he says in a quiet voice as he backs away from the Primal Pattern slowly, his mind racing.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"I don't think Squirrel is going anywhere, Arlo. It looks like he his waiting. I don't think we could scare him off if we tried. You call Random, I'm calling my Grandfather." Realmer slips Dworkin's Trump from his sleeve and focuses on his Image, reaching for contact.

  • Michael James Watson

Dworkin walks out of the cave, slowly.

  • Michael James Watson

Realmer has a sense like he is on a Trump, but no idea why . Dworkin-"Hmm That's a problem now... He's back. been here a few time when i was on duty. "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer slips Dworkin's Trump back up his sleeve and stares at his Grandfather in silence for a moment. "A few times. And he has never tried to communicate with you? Just sits there? Waiting and looking stern."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Has anyone else seen him? Has anyone tried Magic or other means to communicate? Has anyone tried walking the Pattern to the center to... see what he wants?"

  • Michael James Watson

Dworkin-"First of all, magic is dicey here at best. Dangerous at worst. Constructs built here are mighty because the chances of success are so small that practitioners, mainly me, prepare extensively. secondly, Primal beasts are notoriously stern and aloof. Lastly, i never met this one till it showed up and it refused to answer polite questions. You were going to call Jurt with the Pangolin? Interesting... I sent a query to the Unicorn but there are too many people here. By two. lastly.. as much as i want the Red Sword, I'm not inclined to walk the pattern while he is out there."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Speaking of Magic and Constructs; what are the chances my Artifacts will survive if I were to walk it? I know they are not Pattern Artifacts... but they are close. Jurt and the Pangolin being here are above my pay grade. And I know I would leave if the Unicorn requires it to speak with the Squirrel, and I think Arlo would too. But if the Squirrel wanted to speak with the Unicorn, I think it would have happened already. No.... the Squirrel is waiting for something... or someone specific. It is too bad He is being so uncommunicative." Realmer calls out to the Squirrel. "Squirrel. Can you please give us some kind of sign as to what you want?" Realmer waits a moment and watches his reactions. "Is there someone specific you wish to speak to?" Again, wait and watch. "Would you like someone to come out there to you?" Wait and watch.

  • Michael James Watson

Dworkin looks Realmer over.."If your set foot on the pattern your toys would mostly unravel. If i was to lay my protection on them they would survive. But now is not the time. " The squirrel hears your question, salutes. Arlo-"Call Jurt. My call."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

(Which Question did the Squirrel salute?) Realmer pulls out his Trump of Jurt and focuses to make contact.

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt responds, sitting in a chair next to a pool table. Noise around him. "Realmer! How fare thee? Been to the wars, eh?" He might be drunk.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer smiles like a little kid and says in an excited tone: “You're never going to believe where I'm at and what just fell in our laps.” Realmer holds the Trump up and spins slowly, making sure Jurt sees Dworkin, then Arlo, then the Pattern behind him, then finally the Squirrel sitting in the center of the Pattern. Realmer's tone returns to normal. “We need you and Trezziz here now; if you are both willing to come.” Realmer extends his hand to Jurt.

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt steps through the Trump and holding his hand is Untara of Azcala. Jurt straightens, touches his head, then hers, casting a quick sobriety He dips his hand in to a pocket and brings Treziz up and out. The scaled creature looks around and seems sluggish and scared. Seeing Dworkin a change come over it and it leaps to the ground. Jurt-"Well, damn....Look at this place.." He bows slightly to Dworkin, "Great Sire, its a pleasure to see you once again. Its been...50 years i believe. " "Yes, and you seem to have heeded my warning well. And this is Untara.. She is the first Azcalan I have been in the presence of in 4000 years. " Untara stares at Dworkin wild eyed and wide eyed. The Pangolin scampers to the edge of the Pattern confidently. Untara steps toward Dworkin. Unclasping her shoulder broach her loose party gown falls to the ground, leaving her gorgeous form bar save tattoos and scratches and bruises. Her form is comparable to a dark haired Hispanic Flora. She kneels before Dworkin, placing her forehead to the ground, her palms flat. "Founder. I dared not believe i would ever see you. I bring the pleas of the people of Azcala to remove the ruler of the realm created with your blood. Tonacat is the creature of all nightmare. I beg he be placed with the Ancestors of Darkness and our houses reunited. I flee the wrath of the Puma and the Jaguar. I abase myself to your service." Jurt.."Ah.. What the hell?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Hey Jurt. Good to see you. I've had a helluva day. Glad you could join me for part of it. And thanks for bringing Trez..... whoa, what a body." Realmer does not turn away, but does not stare lecherously either. "Yeah, not the first time I've heard that sentiment today about Tonacat." Realmer turns towards the Pattern to watch the Primal Creatures. "This will be interesting."

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt frowns at Untara, "reunited?...ah... Ya, shes my wife and all but... we have an arrangement. And i keep rethinking the marriage but she has made it clear that Azcalan divorce involves one of the couple bent over an alter for sacrifice. so...." He turns to look at Trez who seems to be chittering across the pattern with squirrel.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Do you understand what they are saying?" Realmer asks Jurt.

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt "As i can understand it they are saying" chiiterrechatteeryipyipchipeeeeyyaaachatterchattergruntgrunt yip....yipyip"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer playfully punches Jurt in the arm.

  • Michael James Watson

Arlo-"I especially liked the Yipyip at the end"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer says to Arlo: "I think the 'chipeeeyyaaa' in the middle was inspired."

  • Michael James Watson

Dworkin walks up to the group-"Jurt, get her out of her or I'll toss her off into shadow and I can't say where. I don't need or want a slave girl" Jurt, "toss her off into shadow, eh? Well, I could use the rest"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer chuckles but says in a more serious tone, "We can't really afford distractions, Jurt. If she can't behave maybe she should be elsewhere right now."

  • Michael James Watson

Arlo nods to Realmer "I think that part is Apache for "The Cattle are Dying"  · 43w

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt-"You tell her. me, I'm wondering why Trez is still chattering with the Squirrel and in my spare time what he means by the Houses of Azcala and Amber reuniting. Life was so much easier when i was just a bartender"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Not my wife. You brought her. Azcala and Amber reuniting.... hmmm.... interesting. And my life was easier too when I was just an Adventurer in Shadow... but life changes and here we are."

  • Michael James Watson

Dworkin looks at Arlo and Realmer catching their eye. He touches Jurt and Pangolin turns and chitters at Dworkin. Dworkin chitters back. Pangolin runs across the pattern to Squirrel. Jurt turns to Dworkin, "Iv never seen her act like that. Would you like to explain what she meant?"

  • Michael James Watson

Dworkin shakes his head. "No. Forget. Sleep. " Jurt slumps. Dworkin turns on Untara, who bows her head. "Forget. Sleep"

  • Michael James Watson

Jurt and Untara fade from view.. "can't have them remembering being here. Bad enough Pangolin knows.. But they are going to travel together for a bit. Back in time actually to the Far isles.. To speak to Harla. Shes running a long game from the grave by doing everything in the past..Clever girl. "

  • Michael James Watson

Squirrel and Pangolin disappear

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Well, anything 'from the grave' is something the Vampire of the Depths would surely be interested in. Or is this one of those 'tell you about it later' subjects?" Realmer looks at the Primal Pattern longingly, knowing one day he will walk it, and that day is not today. He stares into the colors of the Primal Pattern until he becomes lost within them, he opens his Psyche to the Pattern and bares his Soul.... then pulls back... regains himself and bows to the source of his Family's power.

  • Michael James Watson

"Arlo, take Realmer with you. I'm going to take this shift and sit here and talk to my old friend." Arlo nods-"Well, Library? You have a conversation to have with the king today, don't you?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Yes, I do and the Library is as good a place as any."


King Random's Jam Session, Hagalta's Crystal Heart and the Dungeons

  • Random is in the music room, jamming with of all people, Vek. They have a long sideboard filled with sandwich fixings and a large pitcher of gin and tonic on crushed is, limes wedges floating in it.
  • Michael James Watson

"Oh look! My favorite cousin come home from the wars!!"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer listens while moving to the bar. He pours four drinks from the pitcher, not knowing if Arlo followed him in or not, then uses the ritual and incantation he recently learned from Brand to refill the pitcher. He picks one up and silently toasts the musicians with a raised glass then has a sip and looks for a comfortable seat. Realmer has no intention of interrupting Random and Vek by speaking; when the King is ready to speak with Realmer, the King will speak with Realmer. Realmer sips and enjoys the music, wondering why he never bothered to learn a musical instrument.

  • Michael James Watson

"No need to tuck in too tight. The prisoners get fed pretty well downstairs i hear"

  • Michael James Watson

Vek-"Ya, Random, I should go...." Ran leans back. "No no. You and Arlo stay... I need witnesses"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"I am well aware of the Dungeon's feeding schedule and menu selections, from having lived down there myself, Majesty. And witnesses..." Realmer sighs deeply, "yes, perhaps a good idea. I would hate for the story to be less than accurate in the days to come." Realmer takes a big gulp of his drink before continuing. "So... I am sure by now you have heard Martin's side of the story... and Benedict's report, at the very least, so you have all the pertinent details. So, would you like me to relate how it all happened from my point of view? Or would you like me to sit here quietly for my ass-chewing and pronouncement of punishment?" Realmer is not being snide, or snotty, or sarcastic in any way. Nor is he being flippant or nonchalant about the matter; just matter of fact and to the point.

  • Michael James Watson

Ran-"Vek, can you do a dramatic reading of What Benedict told me earlier? You know, like you did for me when Bleys tried talking his way out of that thing..." Vek looks unwilling, "Ah.. sure... But is it really necessary?" Ran nods. Vek sighs

  • Michael James Watson

Vek shapeshifts his head to resemble Benedict. "Well Random, I've always liked Martin and I have always thought he had a great store of reason. I can only assume he got it from Morganthe. If he thought he needed to sit the damn seat then there is not a damn thing that would stop him. You approved putting the damned card in the deck so you can't blame anyone else if someone sits it. And Remember, you ordered me to sit it and you damned well know that Martin sitting in it was part of my vision. So if you are angry at anyone, be angry at yourself. Now, can we get on to something important? I think we can flip Xozla if we.." Ran-"that's enough, Vek...So, consider your ass chewed. I'm the friggin king of the universe and I have Benedict snapping on me like a crotchety old fighting dog every time i turn around. This Progress is going to drive him crazy. He can't decide if he is excited or terrified. I'm half tempted to line everyone up and tell them I've changed my mind.. Now...Vek...How about something like Waltz for Debbie...and Realmer...make me a hoagie. Don't skimp on the peppers and the horseradish. I've got a meeting with Julian's fae puppy at some point and I want a good buzz and bad breath for it"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

While Realmer makes a hoagie for the King exactly as he ordered it, he says to Vek; "That's a pretty good impersonation of Benedict. Has he seen it?" Realmer chuckles and brings the hoagie to Random at his drum set and places on a small table near to him if he has returned to drumming. "Julian's Fae Puppy?" Realmer inquires of Random.

  • Michael James Watson

Vex starts playing the piano softly, "I'm just going to assume that's a rhetorical question" Ran taps a bit. "Ya, Donovan. Son of Julian and one of Titania's high Ladies. I don't remember the name. I think I've met him twice... Fae. He just got back from nasty Place and Duncan wants me to fast track him to the Rangers."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Hmm, didn't know Julian had a Fae Son. Considering I am to have a meeting with Nina and Julian relatively soon, concerning what we discussed earlier, Majesty; is Donovan a subject to discuss or avoid with them?"

  • Michael James Watson

'Your call on that. Its a little matter. If Nina gets jealous its her own damn fault. They were separated for over 4800 years. Did she think he would be celibate? He had Duncan and Donovan... Besides, depending when you get there he might be along. Duncan wants him on the march rather then going to Fantalin..Think that's a good idea?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Well, I attended Fantalin and benefited greatly; as did all who attended... or so I have heard. I would recommend it for everyone. But I have also heard the same of Nasty Place from those that have attended. Now I have not attended Nasty Place, but seem to be coping well despite the fact. I'm sure there are some who have not attended Fantalin and turned out acceptable without it. But if Duncan thinks him Ranger material, then Academy learning may not be the way for young Donovan; walls, books, classes, schedules, lectures.... no, not a good fit with Nature Types... usually. I'm sure he'll get along fine without attending if he intends to remain 'in the field'."

  • Michael James Watson

"I'm thinking of forcing him on the whole progress. Make him sit with a bunch of us old farts. Ride on a starship part way. Ride in Flora's lime.. Silly cow is picking up a classic Royals Royce Limo conversion outside Diega and having her driver run it the rest of the way. Really.. a limo with Flora at Horse speeds? That's a long few days and an education in itself. After we get to the Courts he should have learned everything he needs to know. What do you think?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer smiles broadly and laughs loudly and genuinely. When he stops laughing he says with a wicked smile and a glint in his eye: "Majesty, I couldn't think of a better experience or better education for a young Amberite than being forced to go on a long trip with Family. Especially an Official Royal Progress." He finishes his drink and says, "In regards to my time table, Majesty; I was hoping for a brief visit with each of my sisters then another visit with my Father; Grandfather wants to be present when I do, then a walk on the Pattern, if permitted, then a call to Nina and off to Adagalasck to talk politics. After that, the self-imposed quest I mentioned earlier. I could rearrange some of that... but the walk on the Pattern and the Quest have to be last... I might be gone for a little bit. Hopefully not long."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"In fact, Majesty, now that I think about it, I should probably take care of Matters of the Crown before personal matters. I will contact David Mather's regarding the meet up at Diega Raks for the two of you, then I will contact Nina and head to Adagalasck. I can always return to Amber for my personal matters later."

  • Michael James Watson

Arlo fixes a hoagie. "We have a small problem with Hagalta. You have that glass heart? Did it have any effect on you?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Yes, I still have it. And yes, it did have an 'effect'... I saw and felt all of the pain and anguish of my Father's life; including his repeated sacrifices on Azcalan Altars. Though it was intense, I haven't had any side effects from the experience or carrying it. And that is another Matter of the Crown, at the moment." Realmer turns to Random. "Which ever matter is of most import to you, Majesty, I will deal with first."

  • Michael James Watson

Arlo-"Can I see it? put it on the table here'

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer withdraws it from the Vault Pocket and shows it to everyone the puts it on the table but blocks anyone from getting too close. Like, smashing distance. "Please promise no one intends to smash it and end my Father's life. I thought we were all hoping for peaceful solutions."

  • Michael James Watson

Arlo nods. Taking out a pair fancy glasses he kneels close, raises the sigil of Amber and looks through them all. Moving lenses, he studies it. Looking to Random who walks over, He hands Arlo the Jewel of Judgment. Arlo moves his vision into the stone with the jewel as a focus. Moments pass. He hands the jewel back "Its his heart alright. Crystallized.. It could be destroyed and not harm him I think. they must have regrown his heart. Impressive magic. Its a pretty wicked focus. I can't say for sure but its a good bet they can see anything happening to whoever holds it as well as accessing the memories contained.. i am almost certain i could grow a silumacrum at Vulsar then use this to implant memories, personality, the works.. The longer you hold it the more of your memories get attached to it. I have no other ideas what it might do but everything Untara told us seems true from what i can tell. By her own admission she isn't a priest and isn't an expert of that kind of priestly or clerical-magic. she also said a High Priest could control the actions of its original owner. If Hagalta had this done to him as long ago as he said it would really explain a lot of his actions over the last few years. Adagalasck wasn't sealed very tight. I guess it really only prevented Nina and Emile from leaving. Realmer, I recommend putting it someplace safe for now.


  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Any recommendations, Arlo? I have a couple of places I could keep it safely and secretly."

  • Michael James Watson

Arlo looks at Random who shrugs. Arlo frowns.."If I held onto it i could research it a bit more but frankly t scares the pee-wadding out of me. It has his memories and I think it keeps getting them. If that's the case, maybe give it back to him. He's in the Dungeon below the pattern room and he isn't going anyplace. "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"I'm not sure I want anybody to have this, considering what we think it could do, but mostly because we're not sure what it's intended purpose is or what my Father wants to do with it. It has a Necromantic 'feel' to it, for sure, and though I would like to investigate it further myself, I'm not sure I want to suffer any consequences of me doing so." Realmer sighs. "Guess I'll be heading to the Dungeons very soon. Hope Grandfather is done talking to his 'old friend'. I'll call him on the way down." Realmer picks up Hagalta's Heart Glass and puts it back where he got it from, then awaits the King's Command.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Oh, two more things, Majesty. Did Martin happen to mention the punishments I recommended for him and myself? Or the Reprimands I suggested for Benedict and Vance? I only ask because I would like to withdraw them; considering my lack of knowledge in Military Protocols. And I am seriously considering taking the Lord Marshall's course in Nasty Place. Though I have gotten along fine without it... until now. All things considered, the training and knowledge, as well as change of mindset, could do me much benefit. And I think I found a way to fix the problem of keeping me, or anyone, out of action too long; if Benedict can control the Shadow of Nasty Place he could speed up the Time Flow so that his decade long course is no longer than a day in Amber... or even an hour. Just a thought."

  • Michael James Watson

Random takes a bite of his hoagie, tapping the bass drum idly with a toe..a noise barely heard, a sign of a 4 pip drummer. "Oberon created Rasak. Nasty Place is just the name given it over the century. Until i became king it was a state secret. Elites and officers who took it were conditioned to never speak of it to those who had not attended. Oberon built that lodge they run the card games at. That was always part of the classes too. Sorry you didn't get a chance to see it all. It has a whole floor of students running war simulation games. Honing strategic skills for commanders. Oberon liked a game called Tonk, mostly a time wasting game but he considered it a skill to fight off boredom with mindless games. Benedict brought in Poker. Gerard brought in Bridge. Bleys brought in Hearts and Spades. Corwin brought in a game called Diplomacy that he ran across on an earth world long before he was trapped on one. That game is the only one that we ever had a problem with. Its tense and tricky and being played at Nasty Place the players are all trained killers." "We have tried changing the time ratio. Finndo is the best at that kind of thing and says that even if he could change it, it would require pushing a world already precariously close to Chaos a lot closer. Changes in time relations push Shadows eat or west. What complicates it is that the Course isn't taught on just that one shadow. We have about 500 of the shadows of Rasak being run by various shadows of us, Shades you understand, and our Benedict has a working arrangement with nearly all of them. Ever want to be creeper out? Try sitting in on a planning meeting with Benedict's NP Commission. with 500 Benedicts. The freaky thing is being rational and pragmatic Benedicts, they all recognize ours as the pinnacle of the Benedicts and deffer to him in a complex hierarchy that make my head hurt.. Trying to change the time of one, would mean trying to change all 500 or removing ours from close proximity to them. That by the way, is a state secret and frankly Ben doesn't need to know I told you. So, consider your ticket punched if you are inclined. Call Ben and he will get you in the next session. Take Gangdis with you. After growing young again he could probably use a refresher course in the new rituals. " "However, i know you have a lot of things to do and I don't want to drop more on you. Go to NP, by all means, and take a year or so to do other things.. However, come New Years, I'm inclined to appoint you to the Council of Commentary for a year. It would mean staying in Amber of a year. I get to appoint 5 people, one of whom is always Dame Margot, and have a seat myself. I plan to Assign you, Margot, William Feldane, Helene du Sarn, and a surprise for the next year, Jurt Sawall. I suspect a lot of people to shit purple over my appointing a Chaosian not in fealty to Amber but as you know, he and I have an arrangement."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"I hadn't realized that Nasty Place was more than one Shadow, let alone a massive network; I can see how it would be difficult to make a change as significant as altering the Time Flow. And I won't mention to anyone that I heard any of this." "I thank you for the time to care for my personal matters, Majesty, and the offer of Appointment to the Council of Commentary." Realmer bows to the King. "And I am sure you are right about the peoples reaction to Jurt on the Council... but it will draw attention away from my Appointment." Realmer chuckles. "But now I wonder; am I still to accompany you on the Progress? And how long before it begins? Though I have heard much, seen planning and felt the excitement and anxiousness of those in Amber, I still have not heard when it is to begin? I would like to be able to plan accordingly."

  • Michael James Watson

"OH, I'm sure it won't start for a month at least. Then 4 months of Amber time. If we are not involved in a red war we should have a month or so till New Years. If all goes well I suspect the New Years celebration to be well attended by royals across the universe. " "I spoke to one of the members of the Real Estate council who tells me that purchases of real estate below the royal approval level is soaring. I've got a stack of requests for property all across the realm that are above the Royal approval line. Estates, manors, Townhouses. Industrial spaces. All n preparation for future business. I've had to approve three new Embassy compounds in the city itself. Mandalay wants to buy the old Tadala estate & forest. that's east of Jal. I received a request for an Embassy in the Castle district from Regor and they also want a estate in the woods near the base of Kolvir. and ballsiest of all is that a cadre of Chad has asked for the abandoned Temple of Cathlhu in the Temple District. Cathulu? I had no idea there even was a Temple of Cathlhu! I've lived here a thousand years an I never knew anyone worshiped him. But, apparently one of the CHAD adventurers was able to open the sealed doors. Ben tells me that he remembers it having worshipers in the 3000s but its been abandoned since then. Said Brand chased the priests out of Amber on Oberon's order."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"I had read about the Cthulu Cult in Amber in one of the dusty old tomes in here, but did not know about the Temple. I figured it had been destroyed or reclaimed by the Crown. Had I known it was available, I might have asked for it myself; Cthulu Temples are always quite spacious. I think it's because of all the Tentacles." "And I believe a month in Amber time might be just enough for me to accomplish all I wish to, including attending Nasty Place, and getting me back just in time for the Progress. Well, I have much to do. If there will be nothing else, Majesty, I will excuse myself to tend to my matters."

  • Michael James Watson

"So that's a yes, on the Council?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"A tentative yes, Majesty. Much could happen between now and then. Plus I'd like to research the Position before officially accepting and filling it."

  • Michael James Watson

"Is that a maybe? I'll take it as a Yes, Unless I'm dead. Now, you are dismissed."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer bows to the King and exits the Library. He heads towards the stairs leading to the Dungeons. Along he way he pulls Dworkin's Trump from his sleeve and contacts his Grandfather.

  • Michael James Watson

"Realmer...How long has it been since we last talked? I assume you are going to see Hagalta now?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Not long; perhaps half an hour. And yes, I am on my way to see Hagalta; just left the Library and headed for the stairs now, so you've got a little time before I get there. Arlo suggested I return Father's Heart Glass; if you think that's a bad idea I'd happily give it to you to be rid of it." Realmer continues to navigate the Castles while talking to Dworkin.

  • Michael James Watson

The trump closes. Reaching the bottom level the guard directs you to one of the deep circular stairs like the one down to Brands Sitting on the bed is Hagalta. He seems to be sleeping in a sitting position. A moment later Dworkin arrives


  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer pulls out Hagalta's Heart Glass and presents it before Dworkin. If he takes it, so be it. If not, Hagalta will get it back. "Grandfather. You said you wanted to speak with Hagalta and you wanted me to be here... so here we are."

  • Michael James Watson

Dworkin takes the heart, looks it over, sets it on the ground inside the cell. "Ya that's dark magic alright. Azcalan. Perverted a purify spell to create that. Its connected to Hagalta and no one else should touch it. i blocked it effecting me and gave its creator a head ache but that's the best i could do. It can only be destroyed by the death of its creator. Sadly that's a Azcalan priest of some power. Possibly one of the royals."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"I'm happy to be rid of it. Hope the person who made it was in the middle of something important and delicate when your headache hit." Realmer chuckles. "So, how would you suggest we wake him? Assuming he's not already awake." Realmer says, indicating Hagalta

  • Michael James Watson

"We could yell at him."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"We could also pelt him with something."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer says, "Father! Wake up!" He says it loudly, but not as loud as he can. If this does not work, Realmer will use a Power Gesture: Pain Attack on Hagalta to wake him up.

  • Michael James Watson

Dworkin reaches down and scratches the crystal heart and Hagalta yelps as Realmer yells

  • Michael James Watson

He looks up, "Ah...Son...Father..what a trio we make...."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Did you enjoy your 'sleep of the dead'? And you can have THAT back now." Realmer points to the Heart Glass on the floor inside the cell.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Nasty piece of magic, that. Who made it? And what do you intend to do with it, Father?"

  • Michael James Watson

"I assume i am in Amber.? I wanted to get it to Amber. Xolotl made it. he ripped it from my chest so many times. They were angry.. They thought i was giving them Adagalask. They let me return to rule the West Stair and wait till Adagalask was cracked. I could leave it.. But.. he made that..." pointing at the heart. "the Adask of Azcala hate the Tona. They were turning toward me..Xolotl,tortured me for fun, to show them he could. He sacrificed thousands.. I told them i would give them Adagalask. I hoped Julian would slay them to a man, including Xolotl and Aztalios who were there..But he let them go.. When they dragged me back,...I couldn't escape.. I'm not sure why i went with them... I'm not sure of anything... so much of my memory is gone. Tortured out of me from that thing.. If its destroyed, i shall be empty. Maybe..maybe you can teach me then....to speak..to fight...a new thing...i am a warrior...a king.. I will be something new when that is destroyed and everything i know is gone. " Looking up.."Either destroy it, so i will be a new thing, or keep me an it here.. Let them learn nothing new.. Till Xolotl is slain. The souls they take.. They feed on them like fruit from a tree. But the souls bind to things. . Gem glass knives. Shark teeth knives. sacred wood knives, Crystal knives. They hold the souls. " He smiles.. "If they are shattered, the souls go on or they return if the bodies still exist. They did this to me. Took my heart. Healed me. Shattered the knife. The soul awoke the healed dead Hagalta. They do this to prisoners. Rebels. Rebel kings. Keep me here. Shatter all their knives."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Yes, Father; you are in Amber. And you are safe here; safe from others and safe from yourself. I know you have suffered greatly; I felt it when I held your Heart Glass. Now is the time to rest and heal from your anguishes... if you can. This is also the time for you to Atone for your actions, Father. King Random, Benedict, Arloxedra and others will surely come to visit and want to talk with you; I highly suggest you speak only truth with them and be cooperative. Tell them all you know about the Azcalan and your experiences with them. Tell them what you have told me and Grandfather. Make amends with Amber, the Crown and your Family... the WHOLE Family; your accommodations will improve, your menu will improve, you will gain some privileges and freedoms, and maybe one day you will get out of this cell. And in the meantime, I will try to find a way to free you from this Heart Glass and its Magics. It will take some time and I have other pressing matters to attend, but I will do what I can for you, Father." "But just because I am helping you, Father, does not mean I forgive you for what you have done or trust you in any way. Forget not, that when I first came to Adagalasck, you told me Mother was waiting at your Camp, but we both know she was sequestered within the West Stair and had been for years. You promised me safety if I left the Tourney and went to your Camp... we both know that was a lie as well. And when you drew Farslayer and stared at me through Nina's Magic Barrier, I could see the rage in your eyes and feel it in my heart. I know you were but an instant away from using the Powers of that Red Gale Blade against me... I could almost feel Farslayer's blade in my heart at that moment.... I thought sure I was going to die that day. But for some reason you did not slay me. Whether it was for the love of your son, or because you knew Mother would never forgive you for slaying me, or because you feared my Death Curse. I don't know." "And that is why I don't trust you. You have lied to, manipulated and betrayed far too many people, especially Family. I don't know if you are truly the broken man I see before me or if this is just another scheme of yours. I don't know if you wanted to come to Amber just for your own safety or if you have some ulterior motives... like the last time you visited Amber. Your history of deceit and betrayal will make it difficult for others to believe or trust you either. The veracity of your words will be challenged often and this may make you angry, but you must not let that happen." "Your Rage unbalances you, Father, and causes you to make snap decisions that have led to your current predicament and could lead you to even worse consequences, if you don't get it under control. Take the time to quiet your mind while you are here, and remember to keep yourself calm when dealing the others that will come to visit; their patience with your rage and outbursts will not be as great as mine and Grandfather's." "Now, tell us about your Vision at the Oracle of Night. Speak no lies and leave nothing out; I'll know if your being less than truthful." Realmer recalls Doria saying that since he saw part of Hagalta's Vision that the entirety of it was most likely in his mind already and that it could be retrieved... hopefully Hagalta's retelling of the Vision will bring it in full to Realmer's conscious mind, allowing him to know if Hagalta is being truthful about the Vision and if he leaves anything out.

  • Michael James Watson

He stands wearily. Reaches and picks up the skull looking at it, "Alas poor Hagalta.. I knew him well" He chuckles harshly. "I've been under the control of this thing since soon after i first walked a broken pattern. It grants shadow travel as well if you know how to manage it. You had already been born. What occurred with your mother and I is our business. Complicated. But i will tell you this. Take care getting to know your sisters.. Their tears will bind you as strongly as Azcalan necromancy." Walking to look the cell over.."I'll want some things.. books. Food. " "I'll answer one thing.. Farslayer.. It has a draw of its own and when the voice holding this crystal told me to throw the blade and hale you down, the sword almost asked me if I was sure? IT was enough.. The people who control these things are not perfect. I can feel this place..blocking their power. Why? " Dworkin-"You are directly beneath the Pattern of Amber. There are 4 cells here. Brand lives in one. Yours is here. Another special guest is in the third and the fourth is empty. One of the prison staff will bring clothes and Margot will certainly bring food and drink. Your magics, such as they are, won't work here. I am monitoring how well the crystal is working and when i find the person at the other end of that string ill give him more then a headache. I'll spear his brain and splash it all over his temple."

  • Michael James Watson

An image glows to the side of the chamber Its is a form appearing

  • Michael James Watson

Brand seems to be standing in the cell with Hagalta

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Brand. Is that really you, or one of your Trump Tricks?"

  • Michael James Watson

He turns and laughs, "Both. Neither. None of your business. Nothing to see here. Post No Bills. No Vacancy. Hit the Road Jack" "Hagalta, you and I will be speaking a lot. We will explore many topics. In time the crystal you hold will have no control over you and we will destroy it together then. in the mean time.." He puts h hand on Hagalta's face and he shakes briefly. Hagalta nods "Better.. the screaming is less. Fading.. Now...i'm just hungry."

  • Michael James Watson

Dworkin chucks Realmer's should smiling broadly

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Thank you, Brand." Realmer bows to Brand then looks to Hagalta. "You still haven't shared you Vision, Father. I'm sure everyone here would be interested in hearing it. You can eat while you talk." Realmer pulls out his Mandalayan Dinnerware, sets each piece on the floor before him, then taps each piece to fill them all. He then slides each through the bars and says, "I'll want those back before I leave. Enjoy the meal.... while you talk."

  • Michael James Watson

Dworkin whispers in your ear, "You realize that isn't Brand, right? that's my...'old friend from upstairs"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer whispers back, "I suspected something, as I know Brand shouldn't be able to get in here that way. Clever deception." Realmer returns his attention to Hagalta and 'Brand'. "How is the food, Father? The Dinnerware hasn't attuned to my tastes yet, so you get what you get, for now. If you want more, just give them two taps; they can be used twice more today. You'll get something different each time. Unfortunately, the tea cup will not produce alcoholic beverages, so...." Realmer pulls out a wooden cup and a red ceramic jug; he pulls the cork on the jug with a Cantrip, fills the cup half way then goes to push it through the bars... then stops. He pulls the cup back, fills it the rest of the way then passes it through, recorking the jug and putting it away in his Robes. "Rot gut tequila; Jurt's special blend. I'm sure you will enjoy it as much as I do, Father."

  • Michael James Watson

He takes the plates, "I'll take the food, but I'll hold off on the rotgut. My mind is foggy enough. Live clean for awhile. " The vision of Brand disappears. He starts picking at unfamiliar plate produce "The Oracle of Night. Folly.. I should never have gone there.. But Xoxtl wanted to see what i would see. I saw war between Azcala and Amber and Regor. Regorian troops riding with Amber. I saw myself leading the Azcalan Adask in revolt. I saw the Tona fleeing into the Abyss if they are defeated and releasing the monster in the tomb. Azcala was sealed by Swayvil. Swayvil gave Tonacat the Key to unlock it. The key unlocks other things including the Tomb in the depths.. Azcala might never have made war if Xoxtl had not convinces Tonacat they could win...because of me.. Its all my fault. " He shakes his head, looks at the skull... Maybe the best thing would be to just smash it. Its not impervious. I've sen thousands of them broken.

  • Michael James Watson

Dworkin-"Tonacat has the Key?!? The Key?!!! We'll that was colossally stupid of Swayvil and it makes him not just a bystander but possibly a participant in Azcala's war on us. This will have to be cleared up before the Progress. It might change everything."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Would you like to bring that information to the King, Grandfather? I still have much to do. But the order of things has changed yet again. Such is life at Castle Amber." Realmer does not take the wooden cup full of tequila back, he leaves it for Hagalta... he might want or need it later.

  • Michael James Watson

Dworkin-"I need to check some of it first but yes. Move along. I'll let Random know.”

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Father, I must leave you now. When I return to Amber, I will check in on you then. Grandfather; I will be in touch." Realmer heads back up the spiral stairs and back up into the Castle proper.


David Mathers, Lewis Carroll, Pierre and Aries Colbrese at Fantalin

  • While ascending the great spiral stair up to the Castle, Realmer's mind sorts through what he must and wants to do, and what order best to do them in. He decides that visiting his Sisters can wait, most likely until after he returns from Nasty Place and just before joining King Random on his Progress... assuming that still happens considering recently acquired information from Hagalta.

Ordering his thoughts and priorities a bit more, he decides to get the quick things done first; relaying a message to David Mathers as to what to do once he and his riders reach Diega Raks. Then a messaged relay and perhaps transport assistance to Lewis Carroll regarding Fantalin. Then a call to Nina and a visit to Adagalasck to have a conference with Julian and her regarding the Council and the Pattern... and maybe the Golden Circle. After that, walk one of the Patterns and have it take me to Grandmother Verna. Nasty Place to follow upon my return to Amber. But first... ~Bob; Trump Relay. Use your Trump Powers to contact David Mathers, then relay the contact to me. Make sure you appear to him as a White Raven, so he recognizes you.~

  • Michael James Watson

The contact seems somehow fragile. "Relmopator. A pleasure.... We are on our way to Diega Raks and have encountered the enemy already"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"David. Glad I could reach you without a formal Trump; I'll have to make this quick. King Random has agreed to meet with you. When you arrive at Diega Raks, find the Amber Representative there and let him know who you are and that a message is to be sent to King Random letting him know of your arrival. Feel free to drop my name if you think it will help your credibility. You have also been approved to attend Fantalin, if you desire. Let me know when you wish to attend and I will gladly take you there, if I am not otherwise preoccupied."

  • Michael James Watson

"Well, we had a little fight and it has given the men a first taste of shadow travel.. It also caused us to have a moral issue. Can you clarify the rules of engagement in the situation? "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"What is the situation, David? I'll do my best to advise."

  • Michael James Watson

"well, one of the most treasured footwear in the west are lizard skin boots. Thick, durable. I've got several guys who have hunted lizard on our world, some for sale to boot makers. Most of my guys have them. especially the dress boots. Secondly, taking ears and gonads and knucklebones is a old Apache tradition and its considered a sign of utmost barbarity among us. With me so far, pardner? "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"I think I follow so far. Continue."

  • Michael James Watson

'Well, I'd heard of a shadow off our path a bit but it was having Azcalans raiding it. At least that's what the refugees we met told us. So we went and had a look see. One of the refugees, a warrior of that world showed us where they were and we hit them hard and fast. Killed about a thousand of them. Rescued about 4000 natives..The warrior wants to stick with us so that's good. Picking up shadow travelers to flesh out ar' worldliness ya know. " He twists a cigarette and lights it. "Well, these Azcalan are lizard-men....So..is it ok to make boots, holsters, and other you know, leather stuff out of them? How is Amber on that kind of thing?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Amber is, as most civilized societies are, about that matter; the taking of trophies from animals and beasts is usually acceptable, but from intelligent beings, not acceptable. Tell your men to collect the feathers from the Warriors slain as trophies instead; those have more significance to the Azcalan Warriors and will show what you have done if you meet any more Azcalan along your way. Oh, and shatter all their knives, especially those of Priests. Do not keep them. It will help Amber break some of their foul ritualistic magic."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Oh, and if you can, burn their bodies to ash. This will keep Azcalan Priests from collecting their Lifeforce Energies and lessen their Power."

  • Michael James Watson

"Oh... ok. I thought so. Pity. Its good hide. Thick. Resilient. ah..we did put what wasn't...harvested...on a pyre. Knives. We do have some.. Like this one.. Flint with a hard wood handle. Only two fancy knives. Took one of them myself."


  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Yes, I see. Shatter the blades, it will lessen the Magics of the Azcalan. Keep the rest if you like. I see no harm once the magic in the blade is released. But keep one intact, for Random. Tell him I suggested giving it to Arloxedra or Grandfather; for research."

  • Michael James Watson

"Are you meeting us at Diega Raks?

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Possibly. It depends on how long before you get there, in Amber time. I would not expect the Progress to reach there for at least a month or more, by Amber Time. If you and your men arrive there significantly before that time, the King may meet with you early. I will be busy for awhile but intent on accompanying the King on his Progress no later than when he reaches Diega Raks."

  • Michael James Watson

"Fair enough. See you there. how do you turn this thing off?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer has Bob break contact.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

By this time Realmer has reached the ground floor of the Castle and heads for the Kitchen to grab some food; it has been awhile since he as eaten. Once there he grabs an assortment of fresh fruits, pockets most of them, then begins munching on a golden pear as he leaves the kitchen and heads for the main courtyard where the Trump Arrival Site is located... as well as lots of Elites. "Okay Bob, one more time. Trump Relay to Lewis Carroll. And again, show yourself as the White Raven."

  • Michael James Watson

Lewis looks up in surprise.. Looks about in concern and backs through a door behind him, shutting it after he goes through "Ah... Realmer! Its been awhile I thought things had fallen apart. How goes in the real worlds?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Lewis. Good to see you. Things are complicated in the Real Worlds and not much time has passed for me since I last saw you; different Time Flows. Something you will learn about at Fantalin, which is why I have contacted you now. You have been approved to attend and I will make sure all of your expenses are covered while there. Are you ready to depart... or do you need a little time to prepare? It appeared you were in a public place."

  • Michael James Watson

"Oh... I'm aware of time flow differences though as a resident of New France i had little chance to experience it. Except in government offices where time seems of no to concern to the employees. Pierre, Bleys, Dashel, and of course Vincent, have all spoken of it and we discussed the difference between Everett-Wheeler concepts of multiple dimensions and the reality of them from the point of view of shadow-walkers. You say it has not been long. Can you postulate from your location how much time there will give me two hours here? "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Probably no more than a few minutes here, which works for me. I'm going to send my Familiar, Bob, to you. When you are ready, tell him and he will contact me. I will be waiting at Fantalin by then. If you are worried about a White Raven on your shoulder drawing attention, just ask Bob turn Invisible or Shape Shift into something small that can hide in your pocket... or whatever you like; Bob will be accommodating. And feel free to converse with him; he is a wealth of information." Realmer will wait for Lewis to respond before sending Bob to him. He is already shuffling through his Trump Deck in search of the one for Fantalin.

  • Michael James Watson

"Ah.. give me that hour before sending your familiar please. I have company and should see them home before I leave. Have him come to this location then and Ill be ready"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"As you wish. I'll talk to you soon." Realmer breaks the contact. Once Realmer finds the Trump for Fantalin, he puts the Deck away, pulls a green apple from his pocket and munches upon it while staring at the Image on the Trump Card. Once contact is made he will step through, Bob on his shoulder as a White Raven. He finishes the apple and pulls out another golden pear and munches upon it as he walks toward the Academy. Realmer munches on several more pieces of fruit as he strolls through Fantalin remembering his time here. Once he feels he has given Lewis the appropriate amount of time... plus a little more, he says, "Bob, please go to Mr. Lewis Carroll then contact me; I'll bring you both through."

  • Michael James Watson

Bob contacts you with a little chuckle saying Lewis is ready Opening the trump Lewis comes through. With him is another man With a short trimmed beard and glasses. Behind him are two very black men pulling rolling units with 4 steamer trunks each and strapped additional luggage. The there is a small Boy in a turban and white shift, carrying arts supplies, easel, and a paint box, a shoeshine box on his back. Next comes a short man with a goatee wheeling a pair of steamer trunks, one of which rattles suspiciously like bottles. Lewis carries a briefcase. "Good Sir Realmer! Its a pleasure to see you! I wasn't sure what the currency in this world might be but we come prepared to barter our treasures for enrollment and lodgings. I would not wish to put you out of pocket for our maintenance. Once we learn the ways of the land I am sure we will be able to make a living." Lastly comes a dour looking disheveled man in a tweed suit that has seen many better years. Realmer recognizes the man from his Trump as Pierre.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer tries not to look agog at the amount of trunks and servants, but he did expect something like this.... only not quite to this extent. The unexpected arrival of another Family Member, especially one as mysterious as Pierre, is a treat for Realmer. "Welcome one and all to the City of Fantalin, in the Shadow of Thelusia. Cousin Pierre. What an unexpected pleasure. I am Lord Relmopator; son of Satura and Hagalta, Grandson of Dworkin and Verna. Please call me Realmer. Well met." Realmer bows to Pierre then looks to Lewis and smiles. "Lewis, my Good Man, wealth is not a problem for members of the Royal Family of Amber... and not because we are Royals; the wealth of the Universe is at our disposal. You are not putting me out of pocket and I might consider it an insult if you don't accept. Consider it a gift." Realmer hands Lewis two pouches; one filled with Amber Gold Wings, enough to get him started if his barter turns out poorly. The other is filled with valuable gems and jewels that can be easily converted within the Golden Circle; enough to keep him and his entourage very well off for a year or more. Then he pulls a third pouch, filled with Gold Wings as well and hands it to Pierre. "Lewis, you may leave your entourage here while we go see the Dean of the Imperial University of Thelusia; Aries Colbrese. Afterwards, I'm sure accommodations will be made for you and yours. Pierre, would you please accompany us as well?"

  • Michael James Watson

Pierre mumbles to the short man, "Nobles oblige, that's exactly what i mean. The world is ours say the princes of all creation. We walk in the rain of treasure without worry or toil so its the least we can do to take care of the Mehums. " Pierre does not take the pouch but looks at it as if you are handing him a dead frog. Lewis looks suddenly concerned, smiling to Realmer.. looking over his shoulder, "Pierre we talked about this.. You agreed to come with us now please don't be rude... You know they are not all like Oberon or Eric were. " 'Sorry, sir Realmer.. He's not usually so rude but he fears coming here is a challenge to our bohemian resolve. Let me introduce my comrades, This is my dear friend Sigmund and our boon companion Henri. Our servants are Carl and Caius. My valet is Dhruv. If possible I'd like to see my servants lodged with us and to attend classes as much as possible." "As for the cost of education for 3 adults, 2 servants and my dear valet, I intend to barter this for coin of the realm." He pulls a bag with two Mandalay Stones, red and purple. "Bleys led me to believe i could buy a castle if not a title with these in any Golden Circle kingdom. I hope a good universal education will be covered by these. ah...Pierre will want to be lodged with us but as you gathered, he can cover his own expenses. I do apologize for his manners"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer puts the pouch he offered Pierre away and smiles. "I am not offended by Pierre's words or views" Realmer says, addressing Lewis. "Nor do I find him rude. He was just speaking his mind, so no need to apologize for him. I understand wanting to get by in the world... any world, by ones own means. I was the same when I arrived in Amber and when I attended the University here; I wanted to pay my own way and not rely on Royal Wealth... and I did. And the wealth I offered was earned, not given to me or taken from Royal Coffers." Realmer turns to Pierre and bows. "If I have offended you with my generosity and wealth, Pierre, I apologize. If you wish to make your own way then I wish you the best; but know my offer of help always stands." Turning back to Lewis: "I would highly recommend that you do NOT sell or barter those Stones away for any reason. If I did not already have a complete set, I would certainly purchase them from you at a very generous price. Again, I advise, do not sell them or barter them away. Keep them; they can benefit you greatly. You can learn more about them here, at the University. They are called Mandalay Stones. How did you come by them?" Realmer continues to lead them through the University Grounds making his way to the Dean's Office.

  • Michael James Watson

Sigmund chuckles, "I suspect Pierre has issues with his father and the abandonment of his mother by him. Raised by as a sculler in a home of a important English Lord of the French Empire he saw a great many of the great names of this realm 80 years ago. His lord even served as Cupbearer for the Emperor for a time. He spent a great deal of time in the impoverished backside of the house where his mother was a ladies maid. Lord Oberon visited the Emperor often and once stayed at the home of Pierre's lord. That his mother allowed such liberties on herself be taken, as expected of one of her station, is a deep source of angst for Good Pierre. That Oberon tried to make recompense by seeing Pierre given passage through the pattern doe not set aside his bitterness" Pierre, scowls, "Siggy, that is none of his business."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"I agree. If Pierre wanted to drag the details of his painful past out in the presence of strangers, Sigmund, I am sure he would have done so. It's obvious he is capable of speaking for himself." Realmer turns to Pierre and gives him a friendly smile and a wink. "And I am no stranger to abandonment and father issues. But I will save that conversation for another time."

  • Michael James Watson

You take Lewis to registration and find that a message has been left for you to go directly to the Hall of treasures when you arrive. That the diplomatic staff has informed Aries of your coming

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

[*Michael James Watson, I am assuming it was for Realmer only, not guests.] "It seems I am anticipated and required elsewhere. Gentlemen; it was a pleasure, one and all. If I do not see you again before I leave, I wish you each the best. Good Fortunes. I am sure we will meet again." Realmer departs and heads for the Hall of Treasures, Bob perched upon his shoulder.

  • Michael James Watson

The clerk says, "Actually, sir, the message said there would be two of you"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer looks to the men before him, knowing Aries has drawings of his Visions... and though Pierre was an unexpected arrival, Realmer has a sense it is he that should accompany him.... but better to confirm a hunch than to make a fool of himself. Realmer checks the message again for any mention of who to bring. If not, he asks of the Clerk. "Two?"

  • Michael James Watson

The clerk shows the note, Lord Relmopator and companion

  • Michael James Watson

as far as Random knows, Lewis is the companion

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer thinks to himself... what a puzzle... my intent was to bring Lewis here, so he could be the companion.... however, Pierre is of Amber Blood and Aires' Visions usually involve Amberites, so it could be him.... what to do... since Pierre was unexpected it must be Lewis. "Lewis, if you would accompany me please." Realmer leads Lewis to the Room of Treasures.

  • Michael James Watson

In time he reaches the Hall of Treasures and entering the room among the students in there various groups comes Aries and Mars

  • Michael James Watson

Aires Raise the Sign of the Pattern before him brightly. Lewis drops back amazed. Mars steps up. "greetings, lord Relmopator. Welcome back. You bring us quite a prize."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Good to see you, Mars. Aries. Yes, a Broken Pattern Sorcerer of considerable talent, according to Grandfather."

  • Michael James Watson

Aries, "Have you looked at him under the pattern lens?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Actually, no. Perhaps it is time." Realmer also brings up the Sigil of the Pattern and looks through its Lens at Lewis Carroll.

  • Michael James Watson

He wear a broken pattern imprint but around him are coils of threads, millions, squirming, radiating from the imprint but also from his aura. As he looks around it seems like the threads reach out at whatever he looks at, connecting to magical sources. your perception makes you think that he would take a tenth of the time to hang a spell, perhaps much faster to cast it, and the power through might be dramatically out of proportion for the spell. He doesn't seem to know he is moving the threads but like he is somehow sensing things he cant see in this room of great magical constructs. Aries puts his hand on your shoulder. 'Amazing, huh? He's a Madwand. We have not had one here in a couple hundred years. He's untrained...well, Bleys taught him broken pattern and a few harmless spells just to be sure. Its pretty impressive. Think of the energy throughput he could deliver in need. Thanks for getting him here"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer stares with mouth agape. "Amazing" he says breathlessly. "I could only dream of having such a gift."

  • Michael James Watson

Aries nods. "Dworkin tells me such a thing is a cosmic fluke. They used to exist in unfettered chaos but the forces of order sap the ability of the cosmos to genrate them anymore. I thinkn he's pulling my leg. But in 4000 years I've only seen a couple dozen or so. Most notably Finndo. Another, Pol Detson lives in Cynasure. One lives on Ang Ri. One lives in Mandalay, a human from an Urth world. Regor produced one and I suspect one is in Azcala. the Ring Master of Alamond is one. They often destroy themselves before they gain enough training. This one has been knocking around Galarus Galleries since Patternfall. Not aging..Bleys found him. We will see what we can do with him, eh?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Well, since he is such a treasure, I'm sure you'll be happy to accommodate his eccentricities and entourage. Also, Pierre, one of Oberon's Sons, came with Lewis to attend as well. I'd love to stay and chat, but I've still other business for the Crown to attend to."

  • Michael James Watson

Aries glances aside, "Pierre is here? Really? That's hilarious. He taught art here for awhile. Refused to speak to any of the Amber loyalists like myself. Ran with the dissidents; those few opposed to the Golden Circle.. Philosophy professors and drunkards mainly. This was a hundred years before Patternfall. Still, hell of a painter. I'll look after them. best of luck. By the way, should you ever want a teaching position for a few years, to relax, I'll have a spot ready for you

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"That does surprise me about Pierre, he seems the type for non-conformity and fantastic artistry. Thank you, Aries. And thank you for the offer to teach... maybe after my year on the Council of Commentary. King Random said he was appointing me to a seat after the New Year. I'll need to relax a bit after that. Good Fortunes, Aries." Realmer heads out of the Hall and out of the University, considering Aries' offer seriously. Once is he is off campus he wanders a bit, composing his thoughts for his next call; the one to Nina......

  • Michael James Watson

Aries-"Oh Random wants you on the CC? that's hilarious too. " He foes up to speak with Lewis as you leave.


An Unexpected Conversation with Conf of Shadows

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Once Realmer has ordered his thoughts and chosen the order of things, he pulls out a Trump of Tesa Resa, one of his own creation. Realmer feels it's best to get his companions informed and ready to leave Blomsia and Adagalasck before he contacts and meets with Nina and Julian. As he stares at the Image of Tesa on the placard in his hand, he recalls the day he finished it and showed it to her. He showed her how it worked, so she would know what his incoming Trump Contact would feel like so she wouldn't be surprised when it happened in the future and so she wouldn't block his contact. At that time Tesa had asked if she would receive a Trump of him; Realmer told her not yet, but some day... that day was soon to come. Realmer pushes his Psyche through the Trump of Tesa and attempts to make contact with her.

  • Michael James Watson

A face appears almost instantly. It's white like paper though not albino like, the eyes are blue in blue like you have seen in Fortunadas, Lop, and other Tosian\York \CHAD people have, though Carston does not. He has whitish blond hair. There is something about him that is slightly out of focus in a way hard to explain. "Relmopator....we should talk about my young padawan. I've no objection to her serving you but I will not allow at this time for her to swear fealty to Amber. I have watched my Shadow grow through hardship and by her wits and skill and I will not have her become a plaything for Random any more then I would let her attach to Alexander kos Korag. I am Conf of Shadows and she is my apprentice."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

When Realmer does not reach Tesa and instead reaches a pale male, he arches an eyebrow in slight confusion, but then listens carefully as the man speaks. "Conf... Well Met. Though certainly unexpected. It seems you already know who I am, but you don't know much about me. I had no intention of asking Tesa to swear Fealty to Amber or King Random; I prefer my companions to have the freedom to think, speak and take action without being hindered; which is exactly why I hired Tesa and a CHAD merc, even though I have been assigned an Elite by the Crown. But I do appreciate your concern for your Apprentice... my Apprentice... our Apprentice. I will watch over her and teach her well, be assured."

  • Michael James Watson

He laughs... "We have our powers, do we not? Mine is that I hear anything spoken in a blending of light and darkness. Remember I am her principle patron for reasons I only know. She is mine first. Speak my name in a shadow of light, and I will hear.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"I understand that you are her Principle Patron, and I will respect that. And I ask that you respect my need of her and not pull her away in the middle of something important to me. As a courtesy between Patrons, a little advanced notice would be appreciated. Thank you for the introduction and professional courtesy. I'm sure you have your ways of getting in touch with me." Realmer smiles and nods his head respectfully to Conf.

  • Michael James Watson

"Feel free to mention speaking to me to Fort and Venki, they were once my proteges too. If you see Jeremy...tell him I still have the worldstone and his cat and he can kiss my ass....ah...probably best you imply it in context. He can be tense and vindictive. And petty. If I need you the you'll hear my call in shadow..”


Preparations for Rasak

  • Michael James Watson

Tesa comes in to view, "hello. How fare thee?". The transition feels strange for a trump contact. As a trump artist you are not sure what is odd for sure.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Tesa; it's Realmer. Remember, I made a Trump of you so I could contact you... I know it was awhile ago and I have not used it since... I didn't mean to startle you."

  • Michael James Watson

She nod, "Sure.. i know.. There are other trumps of me.. I just...ah..had a trumplike call a few moments ago and thought it might have been... ah.. so. Whats up? its been awhile since i left Adagalask..im back in Amber now though I've been toying with going to that school you went to, Fantalin. Is there something you need? I have reasonable rates."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Last I had seen you, you were in Blomsia, I thought you might still be there. As I am sure you know, I gave up my Ambassadorship there and left to attend to some matters. I'm sorry I didn't let you and the others know at the time, it was a bit sudden. Speaking of the others; Carston and Gangdis, do you know their whereabouts? I will have need of yours and Carston's services in about a month..." Realmer pauses to think a moment, "but possibly sooner for a little trip, I'll let you know. I will need Gangdis in about a month."

  • Michael James Watson

She nods," Can you bring me through? " Upon arrival she tucks several strand of jewels into a bag so quickly it almost seems a if you hadn't seen it. She chuckles. "let them figure that out. A totally sealed chamber, shut inside 4 snapped vault doors, with 40 guards and no way in or out, no ventilation system, and on a world with no history or knowledge of magic. though as I've told others, if you use magic its almost like cheating but then, thievery isn't a game. So.. Thanks for the trump assist! ' She pats herself, looking up, "though, i did leave my victory dance on my horse..got something to quench a thirst?" "Well, Gangdis was recalled when your embassy changed. He said he was being reassigned to a combat command and you would be assigned a new Elite. Carston stayed on with Ambassador Roth till this progress business started. Now he has signed on with King Julian as a ball buster-drill instructor. Carston and Julian agree that the average soldier in Adagalasck is no where near up to snuff. Julian contracted through Carston with CHAD for a cadre of Drill Sergeants, Training Officers, and logistics staff. ya know, military guys. Also hired a 100 of what he calls specialists; adventurers mostly. Even hired a court bard with the lure of a Crowned Bard slot."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer chuckles. "Happy to help with your heist. It seems much as happened since I left Blomsia, though it has only been perhaps a week for me. Thanks for the update. I will have to see if I can get Gangdis re-reassigned... back to me. And Carston... well, I'll let him know of my plans, but if he is happier as a drill-instructor under Julian, so be it." "I will be heading back to Adagalasck to speak with Julian and Nina soon, then back to Amber, then a personal matter I must attend, hopefully it won't take long Then I will be attending Benedict's Personal Military Course at Nasty Place. If my timing is right I should graduate just in time to leave with King Random on the Progress... which is when I will want your services; about a month from now. I'd like you to come with on the Progress; you will be working for me and you will be well compensated for your time and services." "And since you have an interest in attending the Imperial University of Thelusia in Fantalin, now is your opportunity to look into the matter. This is the City of Fantalin and those buildings over there are the University. Tell them I sent you. But please, keep your 'side jobs' off the Campus. What you do on your time is your business, but what happens on Campus is a different matter; I have a reputation to uphold and you will want to stay in good standing while attending."

  • Michael James Watson

she looks around, nodding.... "Look, you've been good to me and Id like to work with you more.. So... i hate to impose.. But, It has recently been pointed out to me by....a...ah.. friend.. associate... ah.. patron... that even with Snikura training I'm likely to get myself killed if i don't branch out and toughen up. I've heard of Benedict's training hell. Rumors, guesses, and' the people who have been there don't talk about it. think there is a chance if you brought me along that they would sign me up on the spot?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"I am aware of your other Patron; we have spoken. If you wish to attend when I do I am certain I can get approval for you to attend as well. I was told to bring Gangdis with me, for a refresher course, and I was considering offering the opportunity to attend to both you and Carston, if you were interested and I could get approval." Realmer looks thoughtful for a moment then draws out his Trump Deck and shuffles out Benedict's card. "Let's find out now, shall we."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Oh, and your 'victory dance'..." Realmer pulls out two containers; a green glass bottle and a red ceramic jug. "Your choice, depending on your mood; Thin Whip's Tequila or my Dwarven Pale Ale... I finally perfected it."

  • Michael James Watson

She smiles, "I've been to Thin Whip's. Ale please."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer hands her the green bottle and puts away the red jug. "Leave one quarter in the bottle and I will show you a neat trick I just learned... from Prince Brand, no less. Enjoy." Realmer then focuses on the Trump of Benedict and attempts to make contact.

  • Michael James Watson

Benedict answers and gives you the information on Gangdis. He says to speak to Random or Feldane for your new Elite assignment. he hems and haws on Tessa for a few moments but agrees since he usually lets family members send special followers. he is less pleased about Carston because he knows that if one CHAD is admitted he won't be able to deny a thousand requests in time. He also says there are ever a solid 20 he wouldn't normally turn down if they came to serve Amber. but suggests talking to Random about this and let him make the call on Carston. Random, in the diplomatic sector amid tables full of maps and lists and Progress paperwork listen to both arguments. He approves Carston though questions why a relatively low level soldier should receive recommendations from two family members. Ben says to tell Julian his request is granted. It's the first step to bringing Adagalasck into the Empire of Amber. Though the idea of Julian as a Golden Circle king makes him itch. Random and he talk about CHAD recruits.. Fortunadas, Jake Whitetail and Kirgor, Tarooos, Vomil. Reltorious, Sir Cantor. and of course Alexandir Kos Korag and a couple dozen of his titans.. Ben-"You know having Alexandir at Rasak will be quite a thing. we have few of the great warriors gods from shadow. And..as the Primas saint of battle, he might bring that accolade to Amber." Ran-"You want some Sainthood Jewelry, so you? Alex is going to be a nightmare for years...He has already started setting up a kingdom just outside the city. We are going to need to find a Shade to send the whole Tosian crowd to. Close enough to reinforce Amber but not so close that they are here all the time."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer smiles broadly. "Might I suggest Ambir? It is just outside the Golden Circle, it has lots of intact empty buildings... though most will need repair. And there is nobody living there... except the ghosts... but they are pretty harmless and once you learn to ignore them they mostly go away. And according to Grandfather, without the Shade Jewel of Judgment I currently possess, it is impossible to access the one Shade Pattern in that realm. Just a thought."

  • Michael James Watson

Ben and Random look at each other thoughtfully. Ben -"Is that Big Jim Torrio's Shade?" Ran-"No, but it think it a close one. Jim still has his Jewel. From what I remember of the Ambir that Realmer has the stone of it was a castle and a quarter of the city, about 1500 year dead. most of the movable stuff was taken by the Moonriders.. destroyed everything including the Pattern in the dungeon and Rebma. Check with Dworkin and have Finndo take a walk and check out the magic details If there is no trouble it might be a good kingdom for Alexandir. Keep him and his people from pissing off Jopin for awhile anyway. Realmer, go take a look for structures and natives. and if the ghosts are friendly.. Shouldn't take long. Then i suspect you would be reporting to Rasak?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Actually, meeting with Julian and Nina would be next. If the next course at Rasak starts so soon, then my personal quest can wait until I graduate.... might actually be better that way for me; better prepared for the unexpected. And perhaps my Pattern walk should wait until after graduation as well." "Would you prefer I take care of Julian and Nina first, Majesty, then investigate Ambir? My meeting with them won't take long considering the faster time flow." Ambir's Time Flow is close to Amber's."

  • Michael James Watson

Random thinks for a moment.."Well, actually, you have been to this Ambir and I'm not sure I have. Can you make a couple trump sketches for me? I'll call a surprise drill on the Castle Elite and take the first few who how up I'll take with me. After that your pick. Nina and Julian aren't going anywhere. As for the pattern, if you decide to go to NP first then Ben will see you through the pattern afterwards. You could teleport to Adagalasck from there. "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer thinks for a moment... "I'll get those Trump Sketches to you very soon. I will have one for the Castle Ruins and one for the Harbor area... those are the places I remember best. And I'll take your advice on the order of things." Realmer Sketches out the two areas he mentioned to Random and checks them both to make sure they work. When he gives them to Random, he suggests that he mention to his son, that he (Realmer) is attending NP, if for no other reason that to see the look on his face. Then Realmer rounds up Tesa, Trumps to the Hunting Lodge where he left Kevin and rounds him up, then goes back outside the Lodge and calls for his horse by saying "Graso". Once his horse arrives he pulls out Benedict's Trump and once contact is made he tells Ben where they are and asks where he and Tesa should report; they are both ready for training.

  • Michael James Watson

Ben passes a trump over.. "Do it soon. Bring nothing you don't need. leave your magic home. You won't be training with it and you need to learn to not depend on it."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

He leaves his horse, Graso at the stables at the Castle in Amber, asks Flora to dog sit for a few weeks, leaves all of his magical gear in his Dungeon Apartment, except the Ambir Jewel of Judgment... for security reasons it is best kept on his person... for now. Then he rounds up Tesa when she is ready and uses the Trump given to him by Benedict. All of this would have been accomplished as quickly as possible.

Volume Two: The Adask War Wizard

Book Four: Unexpectedly a Leader in Training

Rasak and Benedict's Personal Military Course

  • Michael James Watson

Arriving at the trump location Realmer sees many other people arriving through a similar trump. People looking around uncertain, asking each other names, places, time, etc. The land is darkish, like twilight toward evening. Hills in the near range and mountains beyond it. Looking around he sees Carston who sees him at the same time and starts walking toward him. "Sir, Thank you for the recommendation. I know Julian recommended me to here but it was yours that made them decide on it. King Julian has hired me to help him prepare their army. Strange for a warrior realm how disorganized they are. I understand other CHAD members will be coming as well." From behind you hear, "Good gods, are you following me?" Looking you see Fortunadas approaching with a wide smile. "I just saw one of the funniest things I ever saw. Someone gave Alexandir Kos Korag an order to disarm and when he tried to spike the guy, the guy spun under his blow and hit Alex like a hammer to the gonads. I always knew he depended on magic too much."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Carston, good to see you here. I had heard you were working for Julian, from Tesa; I think the position suits you better than following me around. But should you tire of yelling at troops, feel free to contact me at any time." "Fort, it is you who is following me, for if I had not decided to attend..." he looks at all the CHAD troops, then back to Fort "then none of you would be here." Realmer looks serious for a moment, then smiles and chuckles.

  • Michael James Watson

Tesa sounds nervous, realizing she may have made a mistake coming here. “That's one of the biggest men I've ever seen before..." Looking that way Fort says, "Oh my colorful lovely, that's the God of War his own precious self, Alexandir Kos Korag, King of Tosa, god emperor of the biggest ego that ever walked on three feet. Keep your distance. Now, I am a far less crazy mass murderer then good king Alex and I'm a much warmer companion to be sure. But in case it comes up, asking Alex if he was really a Blacksmith's son makes him testy. As for you, Realmer, I have no idea what you mean. We had Random's OK to come here a week ago. I had to translate from Thari to Crazy violent arrogance tongue' that Mr. Big Shoulders couldn't bring his personal cohort of titans..." A man that looks quite like Benedict comes up and blows a whistle. With him attendants tart walking among the crowd, giving each a ring, telling them not to try it on.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer clears his mind of all else and prepares himself for what is to come. He pays attention to the man who looks like Benedict and follows any order given without question. Realmer has been around military types before and worked with an army once back in his Adventuring Days so he has some idea of what to do and how to act.

  • Michael James Watson

The man stand on a tree stump. "I am Banidoc. I am the son of Benedict of Amber. I will lead you in the first 3 years of your training. In your hand is the ring of compulsion. As you see I am putting mine on. It is the master ring. Once you put the ring on you will do anything I say, even to the loss of your life. But more importantly you will do as I do. If I raise and arm you will. If I kick you will. In this world you do not need to eat. Nor drink, nor piss. The air you breath is filled with nutrients enough to sustain you very well. What we will do for the next 3 years, 25 hours a day, 370 days a year is exercise. Run, jump, and you will do so like marionettes. Your mind will be numbed to not focus on anything but the task. You will however fell the muscle pain. as your body learns to accept the punishment." He puts the ring on. "All of you are soldiers, warriors of some kind to be invited here. All of you have killed. Some of you have been killed. That...will come later. Now we run. If you agree to these terms put the ring on. If you have changed your mind the bell is over there. Ring it, drop the ring, and you will be transported to whatever place you came here from. You have been warned."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Without hesitation, Realmer puts the ring on. He knows his life is not his own now, much like before with The Entity. And just like that experience, he knows he will emerge the other side stronger and better. He is ready. He runs when Banidoc runs. And so begins another life in Hell for Relmopator, son of Satura & Hagalta, Grandson of Verna & Dworkin.

  • Michael James Watson

Tesa, "oh damn... the Snikura seems easy by comparison..." Fort, "well my colorful lovely, are you Snikura as well? I took the art in my youth, before the folly of such things was made clear. I was a warrior, a priest, a wizard and a follower of Conf in those days. ah to be young. Its a pity I won't have a chance to woo you for the next 3 years." He puts the ring on. Snickering she says, "Well, the course is 10 years I hear." She puts the ring on. So begins another life in hell for Tesa, Daughter of Conf, granddaughter of Tolknor.

  • Michael James Watson

A yell is made and the bodies line in single file. a spell is cast and all clothes are removed. The assistants walk down the line, each casting spells that remove jewelry, body paint and body hair. Photograph are taken. fingerprints are taken. blood samples are taken. One walks and looks at Tesa. "Your name is 32. You will remember no other name. No place. No rank. no experience before being told your name. What is your name?" 32 says, "I am 32" An assistant at Fortunadas, "Your name is 33. You will remember no other name. No place. No rank. no experience before being told your name. What is your name?" 33 says, "I am 33" the third assistant steps up to Realmer, "Your name is 34. You will remember no other name. No place. No rank. no experience before being told your name. What is your name?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

34 says, "I am 34"

  • Michael James Watson

At a pace of 7 miles an hour a year goes by in 62,000 miles. The terrain is rugged but the running path is well worn. Long stretches are flat but much of it is hilly fading into mountainous. The first year goes by in a blur on non-comprehension. there is no self there is nothing by pain and movement. Even an Amberite's endurance would be tested by the maniacal pace set by Banidoc. On the 366 day awareness of effort returns. Not a name. Not a history. No memory of grievances or triumphs. Knowledge of effort, place, terrain, weather and pain. There are hand movements with no context. the amber battle hand signs are taught on the run, without context, fingers moving, hands moving. There are songs sung without understanding. Languages learned without comprehension. Just memorization. Each hill has a name learned. each river, plain, cave, forest. Types of trees are named, types of grasses. a sense of night and day and the passage of time is learned by rote. As year two winds on the familiarity of the terrain comes. That tree, this rise, this downhill. Run here, jump there. This river, swimming this lake, diving off the cliff, the higher cliff, the much higher cliff. Jumping into the black pit and falling till splashing in wet blackness. Swimming in pitch black, and seeing the light come. Running that course 12 times. Knowing its the second set of 12 times its been run. The third year begins and there is no more pain. There is deep breathing and a determination to run. Faster, 9 miles an hour, 10 miles and hour... The third year ends after 10 months and the runners have learned the space of Rasak. The hills, the rivers, the oceans, the dark caverns. Awareness comes.. they remember their names. Banidoc stops in a dell in the forest. The 500 people in this session. there are 50 camp fires and around each 5 rolled canvas tents. Somewhere in the run the methods for setting up the tent we given in a time of unawareness. The Runners stop as he does. He turns and orders 50 rows of 10. Then leads each ten to a camp fire in the great dell. A sense of individual effort returns. Banidoc walks from group to group. asking names, 21, 28, 31, 470, 499. Tents are ordered set up. Names are paired off, 31&32, 33&34, 35&36. sleep is ordered. Upon waking 32 cries out in helpless fear, pain and deep soul searing despair and a bodily exhaustion mixed with fear and a new feeling of endurance. She is not alone in her angst. Others cry out as might be their nature, or worse, as if it would not have been their nature. Knowledge of individual abilities returns with no name save a number. No rank, no memory, no history. But skills and languages taught. communication occurs by hand sign as if they were a native language. Numbers look on each other in a 3 year growth of hair and 3 year without bathing unless they swam. Suddenly a new thing shatters their minds.. Cooking meat. They see tables in the distance piled with foods of many varieties, food cooking, drink in pitchers and tankards. Banidoc stand on a stump. "Soldiers. You may eat. Dismissed" They run for chow call pushed on by starvation.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

As the order of Dismissed is given, 34 does not hesitate to rush for chow like everyone else. He moves as fast as he can, taking advantage of his thin lithe body to slip between the other soldiers and gain a better place in the Chow Line. When 34 gets his food he does not bother to move any further than needed to find a place to sit, saving a place for 33 next to him. He and 33 were assigned to the same tent, that makes them a team; teammates watch each other's back. But 34 did not wait to eat until seated; he began eating the moment food hit his plate. 34 eats ravenously of any and all food given, offered or provided. He drinks with a thirst that seems unquenchable; washing down every other bite of food with several large gulps of whatever is handy. When 34 sees 33, he motions him over to have a seat next to him in the place he had saved, possibly using a Battle Hand Sign without even realizing it.

  • Michael James Watson

Tesa waking up


  • Michael James Watson

The last 2 months of the third year are a celebration of the completion of the first section. There are 50 camp fires and some compulsion keeps groups together about 70% of the time at their own fire. Groups cook together from the common stores where there is not a complete. Most of the days, and nights are spent in listening to guest speakers who walk from fire to fire. The compulsion to sit and behave, and listen when they talk is strong. Fraternization is encouraged and since no one is wearing clothes there is a great deal of it and only the degree of modesty that in native to individuals. People race, wrestle, but not knowing who each is makes it hard to argue about things unknown. Number 42 makes his rounds through the women in the group though few take a second swing at a clearly massive man at 12' tall. Number 32 passes on the experience but she and 33 do so regularly. 32 and 34 take a few rolls if 34 allows it. Among the guest speakers are numerous elites as well as a few other experienced warriors with story telling skills. They talk of wars and battles Amber has faced but no mention is made of anything after, nor including the Black Road War. Camping groups are directed in the lat month to fitness games among camps. Running, jumping, climbing, swimming. No prizes other then bragging rights. During the 2 month interval, Banidoc is not seen.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

34 spends most of his time with his own group, but does wander a bit to familiarize himself with the faces and the names (numbers) of those in this session with him; he sizes each of them up as well. 34 listens intently to the guest speakers and learns what he can from each of their stories'. 34 seems to have a voracious appetite for knowledge and he feeds it as often as possible. [Realmer has always been an asexual person, despite his male gender and good looks in his youth and again now. Though he has attracted the interest of females and occasionally males, Realmer has never had an interest in sex or romance; his interests have always been directed towards matters Academic and Arcane. And during his decades as an Adventurer, his altered physical appearance prevented sexual interest from others, so he never had to even think about it. And later as a Vampyr, when his good looks returned, his body had no sexual drive. Even after coming to Amber, Realmer has shown no sexual or romantic interest in anyone. But the mind in the body now is not that of Realmer, and the body can override the mind, from time to time.] 34 seems a bit hesitant to Fraternize with 32 at first, though it is not because she is unattractive, nor because he dislikes her, or because she has been with others... 34 is unsure of his hesitation... he can feel his bodily urges and knows the release would be beneficial... but he declines the first time 32 offers but in a way that let's her know to try again later. Eventually, 34 does Fraternize with 32, but no others. 34 is very competitive in the Fitness Games and strives for the top spot always, regardless of the competitions or participants... even if he does not place well in any given competition, he will strive to do better the next time he competes. 34's competitive nature only increases after Fraternizing with 32, but not in regards to her, but because the release has allowed him to focus more on the physical nature of the competitions and the enjoyment of physical exertion... and exhaustion.

  • Michael James Watson

On the first day of year 4 the attendees wake in unison and step out to form blocks of ten;3,3,3,1. The one is in front of the three rows. Group 30s has 32 standing in front. Waiting as the sun rises till noon when Banidoc comes out and climbs up on a stump. "You are formed into Fire Teams. Each member will take turns as Fire Team Leaders. "All teams: You will find you have a camp that is composed of 10 two piece tents, 10 folding camp stools. A camp box with cooking supplies. 5 waterjons holding 5 gallons of water. A company tent with a cook stove. 5 woodsman axes. 5 hand axes. And 10 body harnesses. Fire Team leaders-You will know what items to assign to what pacing of individuals to make transportation even. We will begin our run in a few moments. Make your assignments and prepare to move. Every night you will set up camp, cook, clean, participate in the days activities, then sleep, in the morning you will strike camp and move. Your fire team leaders will maintain order during their term. " "Make ready to move!" 32 assigns equipment accordingly and lines the group in order. The run begins and is a fat paced 10 miles and hour run for 3 hours. Camp set up and food is stacked in readiness to be cook. The days activity includes group calisthenics, kata drills, Ti chi, run and jumps. In the months that follow weapon drills, weapon katas, mixed weapon training, and in the mindless repetition with boredom suppressed the lessons are bored into the memories of the compelled individuals. In the second year freedom of movement is allowed and drill instructors come ad hone the rote memory skills into thoughtless battle skills. Games are included. Various footballs, rugby, home game, and team sports. Tactics are taught on a simple level at first but grow to become natural and obvious. In the third year battle drills become serious. Wound occur causing pain but no blood loss. Fatal strikes to the neck and head bounce off harmlessly. A month of culturally significant dances is done to the general confusion of all, save 33 who excels at them. As the 11th month of the 3rd years starts full movement occurs and the Celebration of completion begins. Banidoc disappears. During the second celebration there are more campfires and more BBQs. Horsemanship is begun to be taught to those unfamiliar with it. Acrobatics are taught and 32 excels at them. Parkour is taught and 42 excels at it. Karate and ti chi continue without compulsion. The parties are not as frequent as people have settled into knowing people they get along with. 42 seems to have a fawning circle of people drawn to his naturally powerful presence. The first day of the 7th year Banidoc calls everyone to order. "You will remember your names only. This begin the Battle Sessions. You will do movement drills, battle drills, mock combats, and tournaments. These will be in couple, teams and split session. You will face different races in mock battle. There will be lectures in large and small groups. There will be periods of compulsion in this activities and period of freewill. There will be little sleep. The actions will not be scheduled but when called must be managed." "Lastly, you will learn the Laws of Amber, having heard her history and her failures you will learn of her glory, her kingdoms her allies and her enemies. You will have little sleep. You will maintain your camps. Remembering your names you will use them as well as your numbers. and Know, your future assignments may depend on your performance. " "First, as the sun rises, we run" And the running begins.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

34 learns the equipment. 34 learns the daily jobs. 34 learns the weapons. 34 learns the drills. 34 learns the katas. 34 learns his lessons. 34 learns well. 34 is a soldier. 34 does. 34 enjoys the competitive games and the teamwork associated with them. 34 learns horses and how to ride them. 34 learns acrobatics and parkour... he likes both. 34 likes the battle drills and mock battles. 34 does not mind the wounds or the pain. 34 is a soldier. 34 does. Year 7.... Realmer, #34, is ready for the Battle Drills; his body is ready, his mind is ready, he is ready. Realmer is a soldier. Realmer does.

  • Michael James Watson

During camp time and socializing time during those 3 years, 32 & 33 seem to spend a lot of time together. Publicly much of it is quiet. 33 is gregarious and make light of his missing memories and entertains people with a outstanding singing voice, musical talents, theatrical presence. Nightly the camp can here their enthusiastic fraternizing.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

During the camp & socializing time of those 3 years; 34 spent most of it observing the habit of others. If asked to join in, he did. 34 is very well aware of 32 & 33's nightly habits and has an arrangement with 33 to trade off tents for their nightly fun and an another arrangement with 31 to share whichever tent is not being used for fraternizing for sleeping or whatever the need.

  • Michael James Watson

Years 7, 8, & 9 are the most strenuous sine they are constant exercise and constant challenges to memory, and judgment. While wilderness survival has been taught all along now it is focused to fight and survive in many terrains. Burning sands, freezing mountains, swamps and clover fields. Live weapon melee and war-field battles with healing each night. Drills, wargames large and small. while individual weapon skills are constantly trained new skills are added. Metalwork teaches forge and iron work, the making of weapons up to a high degree. Leather work is done. Pioneering. Horsemanship and dottlemanship are a daily part of the drills. and the horses and dottles are cared for communally. Cavalry skills are taught from mounted couched lance to fighting long spears, cavalry sabers, to morning stars. Rope work is a part of horsemanship. Artillery is taught to many people with no experience with it. catapults, ongers, ballista, arbalists. Archery is trained from thrown weapons, to bows, crossbows, and bolt and clockwork-guns. Firearms are taught from matchlocks to Vulcan cannons. Classroom discussions held at meal time discus the vat array of military weaponry that exists throughout shadow. One night includes a overview of the Amber Star Fleet. One the Navy. A general over view of musical items is taught with an emphasis on drums and horns,, especially in their use on the battlefield. Banidoc hates the bagpipes but they are taught as well for their battlefield use. Throughout the year as live battles large and small are done medical training is taught with an emphasis on field treatment. The final two months are a Celebration of Knowledge where instructors ask questions on all topics learned in 9 years. These quizzes occur in small groups and large to enthusiastic group. The Celebration includes BBQs, cooking classes, singing, and much revelry among the survivors. In 9 years the rings of compulsion have have forced participants to complete all tasks until the celebration of Knowledge. Then people are allowed to leave if they wish. None do. The beginning of the 10th year begins with Banidoc returning. "Soldiers. The final test comes. You will remember your names. Your pasts, your fears ad follies. The Rings of Compulsion will block no memory. You all came to Rasak with skills enough to make someone recommend you. You have learned many things here. What you were and what you have become must fuse together in the final year and they will be forged in fire and blood. "This morning we travel to the World of Adledross This is a warrior world. It is deep in shadow and the rules are this; You will be an army of 5 cohorts, each of 100 soldiers. Each Cohort has 10 fire teams. You will be on one side of the continent and must fight your way to the other. You will fight foes of may kinds n many terrains. They are summoned to fight from all across shadow. Your woulds will heal normally. If you die you return to the starting line to start over. Victory is rewarded. You will live off the land. Scavenge food and supplies, weapons, lodgings. "Command will change from time to time. The wearer of the green bands answer to the Wearer of the green Band with the unicorn emblazoned. They are the Commanding General till they wake without it. Show that you can take orders as well as give orders. "And you will not be alone. We are not the only ones who use Adledross. Four other warrior empires send 5 cohorts at the beginning of each year. You will meet them and ally with them. They know of Amber. We know of them. But they are not major realms. They are clusters and mighty realms in Shadow and one day many of you may see them, even serve with them again. Fight together, win together." "You enter Adledross dressed in boots, trousers, shirt, coat, and bearing two knives. One a fighting knife. One a utility knife. Everything else you must scrounge. Your magics will work if you have such skills but no thing may be conjured to the world. Some of you had companion beasts. Bound mounts, familiars, and boon companions. They will be reunited with you on Adledross. Remember who you are now. Introduce yourselves. But remember you are still soldiers of Rasak, still wear the ring of Compulsions, and no rank beyond here matters till you leave Rasak. Be you kings or knights, Masters or gods, does not matter. Your titles will not save you, your companions will. Good Luck, Soldiers of Amber. March to the trump gate. Leave everything else behind.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Year 7: Relmopator.... Realmer.... a name with no past but the one here in Rasak. What kind of name is Relmopator, anyway? It does not matter; #34-Realmer does what the Instructor does. Realmer does what the Instructor says. And when Realmer has Free Will, Realmer does as he was taught. Realmer does. Years 7-9 are Realmer's 'favorite' by far; finally putting all that physical training and learning to practical use.... bringing all learned so far together in a cohesive manner.... during these years the previous training methods begin to make sense... Realmer likes things that make sense. Realmer also likes working with his hands. He discovered he really enjoys and has a knack for crafting useful things; weapons, horseshoes, armor, saddles, etc. He puts much effort into his crafting, making sure his creation is of the finest quality he can make it. Once Realmer learns how to make things it gives him a better appreciation for taking care of his equipment, not that he didn't before, but now even more so does he care for and maintain his equipment, his creatures, himself. Though Realmer puts equal effort into learning and practicing all forms of fighting and combat, he realizes during the Archery and Artillery lessons that he does prefer distance combat over close combat. He has a great interest in the various forms of Siege Engines and while learning how to operate them he studies their design and how they physically work; the mathematics and engineering of the thing. He also has a similar interest in the Clockwork Guns and when they are taught how to 'field strip' them he pays great attention and studies the inner workings carefully. When an Instructor said all soldiers should be able to field strip their weapon with their eyes closed, Realmer was one of the first to learn how to do just that. When music and musical instruments it taught, Realmer pays close attention with a keen interest... he likes how the arrangement and timing of tones and sounds can keep all the soldiers of an army in sync, raise the moral of troops and inspire fear and dread in the enemy. Yes, Realmer likes music; there is something about a formulation of notes that causes an effect that greatly appeals to Realmer. And once Realmer hears the bagpipes it becomes clear to him that he MUST learn how to play this unusual instrument of leather, wood and wind that wails such haunting tones as to stir his soul. During the battles, Realmer puts all he has learned here in Rasak into play; not just what he has learned from the Instructors and Guest Speakers, and not just what he has learned from his experiences here, but also what he has learned by observing those around him during camp times, celebration times, the times between lessons and drills; Realmer took the time to learn all he could about the habits and traits of those around him so that during drills he would know how best to defeat them if they were on opposing sides or how to min/max their weaknesses/strengths if they were on the same side. During the battles, Realmer learns from his previous mistakes and the mistakes of others. When he dies or gets injured he learns why it happened and how to prevent or lessen it next time. Realmer finds the blood and gore of battle neither appealing nor repellent, but natural somehow, just like working with wounded or dead bodies. Realmer takes many opportunities to act a his teams field medic; it feels somehow natural to be working with blood and organs and body parts. Year 10: I am Relmopator Barimen. Son of Satura and Hagalta. Grandson of Verna and Dworkin. As Banidoc speaks thoughts and memories try to flood in, integrate, but Banidoc is still giving orders. Realmer stops the flood of thoughts and memories and focuses only on Banidoc's words, his instructions, his orders, our mission. As he moves towards the Trump Gate, Realmer lets the memories of self and past flood back in and begin to integrate. 34: Magic. Spells. Bob the Beholder. Graso the Horse. All excellent assets for a soldier. Relmopator: Weapon Skills. Physical Training. Forging and Crafting Skills. Horsemanship. Tactics and Stratagems. By the Primal Beasts! I'm becoming a War Wizard. Realmer/34: This year will prove to be most interesting and will surely be a test of my mettle. The past 9 years I have been heated and hammered upon to create a strong weapon and this year ahead will certainly harden me and sharpen me into a lethal weapon; yet I must remain flexible enough to withstand the stresses of combat and not break or shatter. I am Relmopator Barimen; an Amberite, an Adask, an Academician, an Adventurer, an Ambassador, a man that has suffered Hells of torment and pain throughout his life and come away stronger from each. I am a Survivor. I am a Sorcerer. I. AM. A. SOLDIER.

  • Michael James Watson

Bagpipes? Figures...

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

I HAD to. I just HAD to. They kind of fit Realmer too. Think about it...

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

had you not mentioned them I would not have thought of them. Might have chosen trumpet so he could join in with Random when he jams. But.... bagpipes it is

  • Michael James Watson

Sure. And I already have a whole spiel when random hears that of all The musical time at np. He had to pick bagpipes. Hilarious.

  • Michael James Watson

When Tesa remembers who she is she falls to her knees weeping uncontrollably. Shaking, grabbing her hair and yanking in despair. Fort comes to comfort her, looking to Realmer then Tesa. She looks at Fort, “You knew....you knew the whole time.....how could you?" "I didn't 'Know' completely but I could feel it. I felt connected but not sure how. It felt right... Don't deny it. Yes I knew who I was the whole time but not much more. I'm A thrice crowned bard. I can't be made to forget. I just didn't know you were....who you are.. I promise. Don't let it ruin this between us.. " She stands, looks to Realmer, "Get him away from me now, please"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer steps between them and faces Fort. "Please, respect Tesa's wishes, Fort. Give her distance and time. And might I recommend that we remain respectfully discreet about this matter and not make it any more awkward or any worse than it already is. Please, Fort, walk away." Realmer waits until Fort leaves; if he does not, Realmer will attempt to politely escort him away from Tesa.

  • Michael James Watson

Fort looks Realmer in the eyes and they seem somehow glowingly inquisitive. "Of course. I'll be around obviously." He whispers in a nearly native Montagarian, "Tell her Conf won't have to choose. It's her of course. And between you and I, siblings of Amber...well, it happens"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer raises his eyebrow at Fort's nearly native Montagarian and whispers his response in Montagarian as well. "Yes. It does happen. But not normally like this. Consent with foreknowledge of the facts is usually the norm. I will see you around." Realmer turns to Tesa and speaks quietly in Thari. "Would you like some company? Or do you want to be alone now?"

  • Michael James Watson

Fort smiles, "well, certainly. Will that be what you will tell her of your own behavior? He walks off. Tesa.. "No...it's clearing.....what kind of people would create a place like this? I wanted this....I didn't know...now I do. Live a d learn? Yes?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Yes Tesa; live and learn. I wasn't sure of exactly what this Place was going to be like either, but had heard enough about it to avoid the Place for the last four decades or so. I chose this also; but despite the Hellish qualities of this Place, it will make me a better soldier, a better person, for it. And you as well. Honestly; if Carston can survive this Place, you can as well." Realmer said the last bit about Carston with humor, not disrespect. He smiles at Tesa and gives her a wink and a slight chuckle. Then Realmer is quiet for a few moments as they move towards/through the Trump Gate; he looks ever so slightly uncomfortable. "I hope there are no issues between you and I, Tesa. Unlike Fort, I didn't know who I was or who you were. As it should have been for everyone here. I don't regret what happened between us or feel that either of us took advantage of the other. I just hope matters between us are solid."

  • Michael James Watson

She smiles, "well, no offense but I would never have considered a roll with you. Not sure why except you don't give off that vibe...Fortunes though, he sort of exudes it... And he didn't know who I was....just That we somehow felt connected....sometimes that's enough....but I was a child whore till I was 9 and said no...killed my first man...prayer to Conf for strength, like I had prayed to the illsigi & Ranken gods, but in the end, it was Conf who answered... I think he had been answering for years before we actually spoke...I never met Fortunadus till here....but...I'll sort it out. Till then we have our traveling orders"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer chucks her on the shoulder and says, "That we do. Let's move like we've got a purpose."

  • Michael James Watson

She stands to get ready, grabs your arm, "Realmer... Are we solid? I'd like to think so but I should make a confession since we have gone through this now. I always thought of you as a employer. Properly too. I've known Gangdis since I first came to Amber and he has looked out for me so what he told me was he thought you could use my talents and you would almost certainly pay far more then the going rate for a come-along thief. Opportunity to make a contact in the royal that might lead to future riches. I planned to give good service, but I was also planning to ride your coattails as long as I could. Hope you understand..I'm for hire..I try to stay away from street crime these days and you were a path to a richer life.. " She looks around as people are stacking equipment and moving to assemble for travel. Looks at him. "I didn't expect to find friends. Carston is more a mercenary then I am but on Adagalasck he and I became friends. I'd like to think we did too. This place...it really makes one consider what one is loyal to. "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer pats Tesa's hand comfortingly, the one grabbing his arm, and smiles at her warmly. "Oh, Tesa, we are certainly solid in my tome. When I hired you on Gangdis' recommendation, I only expected and considered you, a professional Padfoot for hire. But you proved yourself to be more than that and proved that your services were more than worthy of what I was overpaying you for them" he pauses to wink at her, "but more than that, you showed loyalty and trust, you stood by me during the hardest years of my Ambassadorship in Adagalasck... and that made you my friend, Tesa Resa. Carston too." Realmer does not help Tesa gather gear, but works independently of her to get more done faster... and to show his respect for her skills and capabilities. But stays close enough to converse. "If you want riches beyond your dreams so you may 'retire' in comfort and style, just ask and I will give you a world all your own to do with as you wish. But if you wish adventure and power... and for tales to be told of you for centuries to come... stick with me and you will get both, before your days are done. But first, my friend, we must get all of this through that Trump Gate. By the way... where is Carston? I haven't seen him since last night. Busy morning and all, but still, where did he disappear to? I have not heard the bell ring today. Or ever since arriving. I wonder how common or uncommon that is." Realmer continues to pack up to get things moving towards the next phase of his training and his new life.

  • Michael James Watson

Carston was in another Fire team in the 200s, Number 208. He sees you as you are getting ready and comes over. "Well, 34, I'd like to thank you for your recommendation to this place...I've been a soldier in the armies of Wall, and Ichkolai, and eventually Imperial Tosa. I was an adventurer too for a time but I was never more then a grunt, knighthood aside. What I am because of this place is more then I could imagine. I'm not sure why King Julian wanted to hire me, but I tried to be worthy of the confidence he seemed to have in me.. Now I think that I may do well there. "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Well, 208... Carston, the reason why I recommended you and why Julian hired you and recommended you as well is because you are a steadfast soldier; you are practical, frugal, direct, you know good equipment, weapons and horse flesh, but most of all, you give it your all, every time. You are reliable and dependable, Carston. I am glad to know you and will hire you away from Julian whenever you are ready for it. Good Fortunes, 208 Carston. If I don't see you out there, I'll see you at Graduation." Realmer extends a hand to Carston, number 208.

  • Michael James Watson

He shakes the hand, nodding, "You seemed pretty bookish..But you remind me of King Venki now. if it comes to it, I'll be for hire though Julian and I get along pretty well. He has good work ahead for him and I like being part of it. But, regardless of if its you or Julian, its wise to remember when you deal with my people that one never leaves CHAD. Duke Micholt, Duke Dolki, that nightmare Jeremy Fairhand, friggin King Alexandir; all keep their CHAD cards up to date. So will I. see you on the other side"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Oh, I understand the minds and ways of Mercenaries... not too different than that of an Adventurer's... which is exactly why I hired you and may continue to hire you; 'hired help' is more honest than 'followers'. Travel Well."


Adledross: The Beginning

Arriving in the dark of night on a rocky plain in front of a thick wide forest. Behind is a fortification city lit by torches and candles. Forces arriving are directed by a short man with a powerfully commanding voice. The short man taps Realmer with a short baton, "Amberites! You'll take the Midline camp there" He points with a baton. "Its rocky but flat, between the rocks you'll see running water. Establish water discipline, latrine positions are marked, set them up. Diamond formation for camps. You, Relmopator, take your cohort on the west side. You, Kablin, take your 2nd cohort left of 1st Cohort. You, Traxton, take the 3rd just east. " Alexandir kos Korag starts striding toward the man, "Ill take 4th cohort we will move into the woods to...." The short man points the stick and Alex goes silent. "Dandilar, you take 4th cohort and take the front tip of the diamond, Alexandir is your problem. He is to hold NO rank. He is to lead no squads. He is to be a gods-damned Soldat and learn that his will is not an order to any manjack and swinging dick in this army or will fail him myself. Alexandir, listen to me:You may be a god on Tosa and you and I have fought side by side before. So you know I am serious-Your worst military failing ha always been that you believe yourself right in all thing oh Saint of Battle. You came here to learn, not teach, you will follow, not lead, or by the great tusked boar I will yank all the learning you have gained on Rasak and send you back to Amber to wet your pantaloons in shame. Is that understood oh God of Rage? Good! Carston, take 5th Cohort to the back diamond point. The forests in front for 100 meters is thin leafy wood, good for shelters. Tomorrow's mission will be to secure provender. Camp inspections in 5 hours. Shelters need not be complete but they should be marked and materials assembled." A large man with a booming voice, wearing a quilted blue gambison and gray hose, yells, "Boney!!! My luck is grand this day indeed!" The man turns, "Count Roland? Merde, what are you doing here? I expected Edwin." "Ah, Edwin has the sac crabs. That's a bad thing for us as you know.. I've 500 men and 500 dragons crossing the portals now where..." he freezes in place. Boney says ,"Good Count Roland, the information is coming to me now and I will handle the Anzara Reen when it is your fontu turn! And by the Daughter of Desire, Roland, you will not command a flight. Now. take your people to Middle Ground camp and tell them they will hop on one leg for your temerity in addressing me familiar because of our past pleasure. You are on Adledross not on Anzara." The big man hops over to the arriving warriors, hopping on one foot. "Amberites. I am Adledross Camp Master Napoleon. I may be addressed as Campmaster, General, Sir, or m'Lord till I say otherwise. Instruction has begun. If you fail here, all that you learned on Rasak, all you gained there will be lost, forgotten, erased. You have been warned. On Adledross death is not failure, fear I not failure, pain is not failure, mercy is not failure. Fight well. The foe are arriving around the battlelands. " "There are 5 battle armies in camp this session. Far north will be the Kanzari Kzin. next the Reskaan forces of human, dwarves & orcs. Amber is in the middle force. Right of them are the Dragonlord of the Anzara Reen. As a kindness I've given the the largest camp, Beware, they have issues maintaining sanitary discipline. Lastly are the Horseman of The Treba learna Cursis who will have the southern most camp.. They are on the far right for better access to wooded lands since they have a preponderance of light, medium and heavy artillery. Know your companions in war. Many missions will mix your forces for joint action. Dismissed to assemble camp!

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer nods to Napoleon, knowing NOT to salute in the field. "Thank you, General." Then he turns to his Cohort and motions for them to gather round. When he addresses them, he raises his voice enough to be clearly heard and he uses a commanding tone, but he does not shout or bark out his orders. "We are 1st Cohort. Our camp position is central so it's essential that we arrive first and establish out camp perimeter so the other Cohorts can establish theirs. First; Establish camp perimeter, clear the ground and use the rocks to build positions of cover. Second; latrines. Third; cooking areas, water gathering and storage, and last; mount corrals and shared shelters. Area designations and a watch rotations will be established at site. Remember to maintain Water Discipline at all times; keep the water clean for everyone. Absolutely NO polluting of the waters!" "Tesa, you're the advanced scout leader. I need the four fastest runners here now; you know who you are. You are the scout team. I want all five of you at our camp site before everyone else get to theirs. Run like the wind. Go now." "1st Cohort; move fast and gather what materials you can on the run. Move out! Triple Time! Go! Go! Go! We must arrive first!" [Since there was no mention of our 'bonded creatures' arriving, I will assume they come later. Otherwise, Realmer would have sent Bob ahead to Scout the area and sent Tesa on Graso to establish perimeter.]

  • Michael James Watson

They will arrive after camp is set up. dragons, horses, wardogs, and bob

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Did you just call Kevin a 'wardog'? HAHAHAAAA no... wait.... that could work.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

oh, I understand. I live with three of them. But they are very well behaved and not vicious. But... They absolutely have the potential for it. I've seen them chasing after stray cats and they sure seem vicious then.

  • Michael James Watson

maybe he can take NP next time

  • Michael James Watson

Tesa runs off to gather runners while the rest move o the camp area and start squaring things away. I looks fairly clearly where things get setup from long repetition. Everyone is a soldier so there is no roughhousing or lollygagging. All 5 cohorts get set in place. Runners scout out good lumber and the axemen follow and start sorting out shelter structures, stacking wood in place in preparation for assembly.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer does not bark orders or assign tasks, instead he allows the soldiers to assign themselves to tasks; they know what needs to be done as well as Realmer does and they are capable of doing the tasks. Realmer will only assign tasks, direct or redirect manpower as needed. Realmer will not shirk manual labor because he has been given 'temporary command' of the Cohort; a good leader won't order a man to do anything he won't do himself.

  • Michael James Watson

Bob appears suddenly followed several horses and a cat and a dottle. several of the men greet companion horses. A warrior woman who didn't talk about her past hugs the dottle's neck. The cat runs over to a man from Thelusia. Bob-"There is an army of dragons coming!!!!!!!" Coming over the forest is a dark shape of 500 dragons flying swooping wing. They wear leather harness and shriek as if on the attack as they mean to assault the ground. They wing in unison and pull feet forward to fall to land near the Anzara Reen. The men run and leap on the beasts who take off in the air circling around in close quarter spins and flights high in the air. A soldier of Amber next to Relmopator says-"You know, Amber really ought to have a wing of dragons. " Fort, standing near by says, "Be careful what you wish for. Wall, on Tosa, has several Dragon Wings of different types;colored dragons, Pernese dragons, Wyvern flocks. If you think pigeons are rough on statues I can tell you dragons are worse. Lastly a fox come running out of the forest, leaping over rocks and branches, under foliage. It runs up to Fortunadas who kneels to greet her.

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Good to see you Bob. And the dragons are invited and not currently a threat. But great to know you're on the job already." Without looking at the Amber Soldier that addressed him, because he too is staring at the magnificent flight of dragons, "I agree. And perhaps one day soon we will." Realmer looks around for Graso... he is not sure if she would be considered a 'bonded' creature like Bob... but she is bound to Realmer in a way.

  • Michael James Watson

Graso comes running out of the horses of the Treba learna Cursis. It seems especially chipper. Its noted that few Amberites have bound animals. A few horses and a dottle, a cat, bob and Graso

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.


  • Michael James Watson

Boney walks up to Fort." Soldat, I would like to request you send your companion here elsewhere unless you wish to have a similar creature allowed to Ally with the enemy warband. There is a primal beast that makes its home on this world and in our experience it only bothers to combatant if one side or the other has a primal beast to challenge its supremacy on this world." Fort nods, looks at Realmer, "Fair point, but...34, you are my cohort commander today...Your call."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"I agree with the General, 33... if we can keep Primal Beasts out of this entirely, then let's do so. Send your Fox away. I would do the same if Bob here were a Primal. The only way I would allow your Fox to stay, Fort, is if someone else also brought a Primal Beast and insisted on keeping it, then it would be another matter."

  • Michael James Watson

Fort laughs cheerfully. "Send? Send my primal beast away? Tell Julian to order Morganstern away. Tell Swayvil to demand the Serpent out of Chaos. My friend here will stay and go if it chooses. And it will deal with the other primal if there is one. I may convey my assurances that I am well, surrounded by boon companion and am involved in a game, not a life or death struggle and that its ok if it wish to find a cool glad and wait it out. But I do not 'SEND' it anywhere. " Fort kneels and puts his head on the fox's. It turns and look slyly at Realmer, It runs between his legs and disappears into the forest. "There.. I ...sent...her away.....hehe. She is going to seek out this other primal beast and have words with it." He turns to Boney and says in French, "One does not command the waves, mon general, but one may implore them."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer chuckles and nods his head at Fort. "Fair enough. A Primal Beast Companion is NOT a Familiar like Bob or a Bound Mount like Graso here" Realmer reaches over and strokes her muzzle and smiles, "and cannot be SENT away, only asked." Realmer pauses then says, "I sure hope the words exchanged between those two Primals doesn't get heated, for all of our sake's." After seeing that there are few 'bound animal companions' amongst his Cohort, he feels lucky to have Bob AND Graso, but still starts looking around on the ground and checking his pockets and pouches (even though they are normal) for a little white poodle. When he doesn't find Kevin he shrugs and mentally chuckles to himself.

  • Michael James Watson

In the distance Realmer can Boney inspecting the Kzin when Count Roland come up. "You Sir! Amberite! I aw Boney speaking with you that makes you an Amberite Cohort commander this week. As I am sure you know, we will have some short range goals in the next few days. Food and weapons being most vital. Are you interested in a cooperative effort for a food source? Our dragons came from the east and saw a woodlands patch that looked like a watermelon field. It was being rooted in by a heard of hip pigs. There is a force of orcs about two days east of it. We are 5 days by foot or 4 hours by air. We can ferry troops, and dismount to join you but if our dragons close within scent ranger the pigs will flee. I propose we transport a cohort to west of the field, a cohort north and south, and two cohorts east. We secure water, sweet rinds, and pork enough for at least a week for both forces, not including the dragons. They will be delighted to go feed on orc. " He looks up and sees Boney inspecting the Kzin, "Oh, and I am a spokesman for Flight Leader Grenit and Ronat Scaleback. Not personally being a flight leader this session."


  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Roland; well met. I am Relmopator; call me Realmer. Your plan sounds solid but since it only requires 5 Cohorts, and each Army here has 5 Cohorts each... Your army could accomplish the plan with involving another army... so, if I may ask; why a cooperative effort? And why us? Not that I don't appreciate the offer... I am just curious why." Realmer continues to watch his Cohort as they assemble the structures; latrines first. As several soldiers move building materials to start work on the 'mess hall', he holds up a hand to Roland and says, "Just a moment." He turns to the soldiers and calls out, "Do NOT build a mess hall! Just keep the area clear! I have something special planned!" "Well, better get this done now" he says to himself and Roland. Instead of using the scarce supplies present, Realmer will use one of his specially made High Order Spells to make the Mess Hall: Realmer's Secure Shelter, which is currently Hung on the Sigil of the Spiral. The Shelter will be made of materials normally in the area, stone and wood, but will not use resources present. The Shelter will be an open air pavilion with square stone pillars at each corner and along all four sides holding up the heavy wooden beams and rafters and slate tiled roof. The mess hall with contain multiple open fire pits with spits and several fireplace ovens. There will be several long thick wooden tables for preparing the food and many long tables of stone with stone benches for dining. Realmer brings up the Spiral, not visible, selects the Spell and upon releasing the required lynchpins, the structure appears out of thin air, ready for use. Realmer turns back to Roland, "Sorry for the interruption. You were about to tell me why a cooperative effort with us?"

  • Michael James Watson

"ah, I do meant 5 cohorts of Amber and my 5 cohorts of dismounted dragonriders. As for why we are not not taking them ourselves; Dragons will scatter the hip pigs. Skittish bitches at the best of times if we flew one dragon within scent range the whole herd would scatter. There are close to a thousand of them. If we can take 100 that's meat for a thousand two feets for a week. They plant supplies like this around for the taking. There are 5 armies here. I could take the wing and drop 500 of us far enough away to sneak up but the chance of taking enough is small. 1000 two feets...we can take at least 100. Maybe more. But..none of us have archery so it's hand to hand with hunting knives. Now we have a few combat magic users but the fastest way to fail Adledross is to use too much magic too fast. And lastly, being a wooded area, we couldn't get the dragons to the ground anyway. The forest isn't knee to knee tight but its close enough to make the brutes worthless in a ground fight. "And why you and not the others? The Treba Cursis horseman over there are terrible ground fighters. Hip pig are 5' at the shoulders with 3' tusks and we would lose half the unmounted horseman in the first 10 minutes of battle. The Reskara don't coordinate well in groups over about 50;it's a racial issue for them. They racially mix squads here but it makes them historically unreliable. That's part of the reason they come here; to get over not trusting each other. Politically their world has a dozen kingdoms none of which are homogeneous. So every kingdom has Humans, Elves, Dwarves, and orc races and all their subraces and none of them get along particular well. Raskara is the dominant nation on their planet because they send their professional warriors here in order to force them into mixed race groups. Its admirable, and has proven effective for the military. But in their homeland, all the kingdoms are just one insult to someone's mother away from civil war even if they are fighting each other. He looks toward the Kzin and scowls. "And as for the Kanzari Kzin.....let's just say you don't want to leave your wounded laying around after battle near them. They are hungry after a fight and none too picky about their meals. And well... I hate the fucks. I'd rather kill them then the pigs. They taste better and their fur makes nice rugs. Also, they don't fight other Kzin. I had a force of them here team up with a foe band against us once. I'll never trust their word again. On the other hand, we've worked well with Amberites in the past. Princes Bleys, Brand, Gerard, and Julian as well as Princess Deirdre have all fought on Anzara with the Reen. I've no complaints with their actions there or here."

  • Michael James Watson

"We have 10 months to cross 2000 miles. For ground troops that's a he'll of a walk. 7 miles a day without battles and terrain issues. I could fly the wing across in a month but what's the fun in that? Part of this is teaching my dragons to coordinate with ground forces and delay gratification. And to be honest, I've over 200 young dragons on their first trip here. Partially trained...my riders are all experienced but 100 of them are here for the first time. So... It's a training exercise for all of us, isn't it?

  • Michael James Watson

Fort says, "Your dragons? Are you their commander then?" Roland looks at the Foxmate with a wide smile, "Well, obviously my wing leader is employing his strategic skills by having his finest strategist and tactician arrange the most reliable alliance." Fort nods, " well, that is clever of him. I am sure our cohort commander would like you to convey his respects to the wing commander. As one of our commander's finest strategist I should point out that Bonaparte is out of the cat pen over there and is likely to be here momentarily. " Roland looks over and nods. "Indeed, I'd best make a tactical retreat then. Sir Realmer, we will be ready to wing east in two hours. If your forces are there then I'll know we have an accord."

  • Michael James Watson

After Roland goes back to his wing, Fort says. "100 big arsed tusked boars with hunting knives? Charming... if its not too bold, I'd suggest you get Alexandir to wade into these things. He can throw horses.. I've seen him fling centaurs while they had riders on them. Freakish bastard was a strength magic junkie in his youth. He and Zatonic raced to see who could drink the most of the blue strength potions. Also, his skin cant be pierced by non-magical weapons. I've seen a dragon chew on him till it sprained its jaw. Just pissed Alex off. Have him pick these thing up by the snouts, smash them around and toss them behind him for the rest of us to dispatch. " Tesa come closer, looking sideways at Fort then to Realmer to add, "We might have good luck with a few of our bigger guys grabbing them by the tusks for the lighter ones to dispatch. Also, a lot of this shelter material is long 3" poles. Put a tip on them and its practically a pig spear."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer listens to Roland's reasoning and finds it sound. Since Fort interjected himself into the conversation and Fort IS a far better strategist than himself, Realmer decides to make it official, during his Command. Realmer turns to Fort and smiles. "Your Commander thanks you for volunteering your expertise as a strategist, Fort. You're now Strategic Advisor for as long as I am in command. Please, keep the suggestions, strategies and information coming." Realmer turns to Tesa and says, "An excellent idea on the shelter poles, Tesa; and considering the amount of materials saved by my use of a Spell for the Mess Hall, we should be able to spare enough for pig spears as well as have enough to complete the shelters. We have two hours until we need to meet the Dragon Wing and less than that until General Napoleon's inspection. The General did say we DIDN'T have to have all the shelter's assembled, just areas marked and materials at hand." "Tesa; spread the word throughout 1st Cohort and let everyone know to make as many pig spears as we can without sacrificing the shelters; and remind them of the size of these pigs. While you're about that task, find 9 others with... specialized skills like your own; let them know they are now a part of the scout/stealth team; they're your team, they report to you, you report to me or Fort if I am unavailable. Move out." "Fort; as my 2nd in Command and Strategic Advisor, you are also my official Spokesman, like Roland is for his Commander. Spread the word to the other Cohort Commanders of Amber's Army and let them know the plan and time table. Then get back here as quickly as you can... we've all got work to do to meet both of those deadlines. Move out." Realmer keeps an eye out for Napoleon as he moves about 1st Cohort's Camp inspecting everything before the General does. Assuring latrines are dug and built, an area for the few horses is marked out and horses are tied up there, he puts Graso in the area as he moves about to assure there are enough poles for shelters and that poles are already being sharpened. Any last minute structures that need assembly or preparations that need to be made before the Inspection occurs is what Realmer is throwing his efforts into.

  • Michael James Watson

Fort chuckles, 'Ja, mein Kommandant, I think I'm going to enjoy telling someone to give Alex an order. He has been uncooperative since he was 18. But... I know his secret name and his secret fears....Never piss off bards and historians." Tesa knows who to pick and grabs them. As Realmer walks among the camp its fairly clear were everything goes. Latrine spots, tent spots, common area, horse lines. There is a sense of long use. There is also char in crevices. Realmer sees Fort talking to Dandilar and Carston, with Alex standing beside. He notes there is no deference at all to Dandilar but something about his stance suggests there may be a bit of fear toward the Foxmate. Dandilar has a hated exchange with Alex that ends when Fort puts his hand lightly on Alex's knee, that being close at hand between the vastly different in height. Fort leads Alex off and motions Alex to sit. He then leans in and whispers to the massive man's ear. He nods a couple times briefly. Alex stands and pats Fort on the shoulder almost fondly. Carston comes over, "Realmer, Interesting plan. I've a few dancer types like Tesa to send her. I think we might want to leave a few men behind. These Reskara are having trouble getting organized and might take the chance to come steal building supplies. I get the feeling that might be allowed. I was also wondering if you might be able to make trumps for us to keep in touch. Fabric for a medium, blood for the art? Charred sticks?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Carston, send your dancer types to Tesa and let's try to gather some from each Cohort. I was considering leaving them behind during the hunting and gathering, just in case... now I am sure they will be staying here, considering the Reskara's problems and possibility of losing our supplies due to raids while we are gone." Realmer thinks for a moment as he looks about the camp. looking at building supplies... realizing that most of the 3" poles will need to be trimmed a bit on either end for their intended use... a smile spreads across his face. "Yes, Carston. I can produce some Trumps for the Cohort Commanders... I can cut some wooden disks and carve faces on them, but they will take some time to create and Command will change... but they could still be useful. I will be using Bob, my Familiar, to communicate when needed... he is nearly a Living Trump...." Realmer trails off then smiles even wider than before. "Bob, you just got promoted to Communications Master. You will be responsible for keeping your eyes and ears tuned to the other current Cohort Commanders, as well as myself, and relay Communications between us. Go introduce yourself to the other Cohort Commanders and let them know you will be listening for their call. In fact, Shape Shift off a 'remote eye' (can also hear) for each Commander. Can you do that, Bob?"

  • Michael James Watson

Bob nod, ot of bouncing in place. "Will do boss. " Then blinks away. Carston-"How does each cohort leaves a fireteam of 10 sound? "

  • Michael James Watson

As the troops start shaving the tips of poles into spears a Kzin Warrior walks far behind the Reskara and up to the back of the Amberite forces, close to where Carston and Realmer stand talking. He makes a chuff, announcing himself. "Amberites!! I am T'Fanal of the Kanzari Kzinti; I command Clan 5 of the Kzin forces. I would like to parley before the day gets too much older. I have 2 clans running at speed east and north. 2 clans running hard east. And one here maintaining our camp. Who speaks for you?'

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"I was thinking the same, Carston. A 10 man fireteam per camp for guard... but I only want half of them visible; I want the other half to be Tesa's extended team of Stealth Fighters hiding and roving the camps and areas between." Realmer watches the Kzin Warrior out of the corner of his eye until the approaches and announces himself. "Well Met. I am Relmopator, Commander of the Amberite 1st Cohort and this is Carston, Commander of the 5th Cohort. You may parlay with me, T'Fanal of the Kzin. Please approach and speak freely."

  • Michael James Watson

"We intend to make a center run for a week then aim north. There should be a thick forest before the flat lands beyond. We can tell from our position that the north is rimmed by snowcapped mountains near to hand. We will maintain a contact line to our troops in camp here. If you wish to trade with one of our bands make the parley howl like I did before entering.It will bring a commander. We have no idea whats ahead but the supply points will have something. We are fleet of foot and sure in such woods, we should be ahead of you. If what we find is weaponry, we may be willing to trade it for food. If we find a well armed warband there should be surviving weapons, clothes and supplies suitable for you kind. We do not deal with the Rskara. Dirty distrustful people without honor. " He preens his paw briefly. "We have dealt with the Anzara Reen before. They are bold fighters as long a they have dragonkind to give them courage but they flee under hard pressed battle. Still, if they wish to parley we will hear their petition. I am not familiar with the horsemen further on."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Soon our perimeter will have guards; if you wish to speak to a Commander, let one of the perimeter guards know and they will direct you. If you cannot locate a Commander look for a purple Beholder" Realmer uses a 2D-lusion to create an image of Bob, "he is our Master of Communications, his name is Bob; address him by name, tell him who you are and he will put you in contact with a Commander." "Since your Clans are headed east, I should warn you; a flight of dragons will be flying east very soon and will most likely pass over your Clans then return back later... I will warn them of your Clans' presence so there are no mistakes. Two days east of here, by our movement rates, there is a band of Orcs, three days past that is a field of sweet melons and around 1000 hip pigs; we will be going to hunt and gather with the Dragonriders of Anzara Reen. The Orcs will be Dragon feed and should be bones at best by the time your Clans arrive there and the melon field beyond will be well picked over. But the hips pigs should return by the time your Clans get there. I will make sure the Amber and Anzara troops do not ruin too many of the melons we do not harvest, so that your troops will have food." "The horsemen are called the Treba Cursis and I know little of them as well. We will trade with your people in a fair manner based upon our needs and yours. Thank you for introducing yourself, T'Fanal."

  • Michael James Watson

He considers your answer.. "I see. Its not your intention to hunt the whole herd? You do not intend to take the whole herd but would leave us a substantial number of the prey? I understand such estimates are at best guesses at this point but can you estimate how many of this possible thousand you think your troops will take? "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Our plan is to cull 100 plus... it is unlikely we would or could cull more than one third the herd. The Dragons will not be feasting on the herd; hence the mention of Orc remains in your Clans path."

  • Michael James Watson

He nods, "That is generous and will not be forgotten. The melons are of no concern to us. They are food for prey. If your dragons allies will be generous enough to contact us and give us a heading to this herd tell them it will be remembered also. We will be running straight and not hard to find. We have a clan to the north tasked to find the plains. I suggest considering a mutual camp on the first sign of the flat lands. It would be for the Kzinti, the Amberites, ...and the Reen. Others would have to petition once its established. I do not ask this now, consider it. When you find the plains, if we are there, consider the invitation offered." He turns suddenly, looking at Alexandir coming up. His eyes go wide and he crouches. Alex-"Cohort commanders. Commander Dadiril says his men are ready to move to ally. We have 100 and 30 sharpened poles. I have a stout cudgel and will bash them like that game king Random tried to make me play. Goof? The Foxmate has dared me to grab the pigs and smash them against trees. He's a little weasel and it annoys me to owe him a debt but the idea is entertaining. Why are you talking to this Kresh? Kzinti filth..." He turns on the Kzin commander who speaks-"Tailbiter...In the flesh..Its a pity I can't bring the real death to you in this place. You serve Amber?" Alex laughs.."Amber called me and mine in its time of need in fear of destruction. I don't recognize you personally, but then I'm not usually on speaking terms with rugs. " He turns disdainfully to the Kzin. "Commander Dandril's compliments. We stand ready, Commander Relmopator, Commander Carston."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Alex, this is COMMANDER T'Fanal of the Kanzari Kzin 5th Clan, and as of right now Amber's Cohorts are on good terms with his people, so while he is in my camp, you will treat him with the respect due any Commander. Understood? Good. Now, go tell Commander Dandilar to leave a fireteam of 10 behind to guard your camp then have the rest move to the Dragonriders camp and team up with them for our transport. Move out." Realmer turns away from Alex and faces T'Fanal. "Commander T'Fanal, I thank you for the information on your troops movements and future plans. We appreciate your offers of trade and your offer of mutual camps once the plains are reached. Please send my regards to the other Commanders of the Kanzari Kzin Clans. And if your Clans on the move watch the flight path of the Dragons as they leave and return, they will know which direction to head to find the melon field and hopefully the hip pigs. Well Met and Good Fortunes, Commander." Realmer thinks to Bob; 'Bob, have you contacted Kablin of 2nd Cohort and Traxton of 3rd? What is the status of 2nd and 3rd Cohorts? Are they nearing ready to meet with the Dragonriders?"

  • Michael James Watson

Alex chuckles as he walks off, walking close to the crouched T'Fanal, "Good sir T'Fanal, You are a commander so I shall be polite as instructed. Please, if we interact in the future, and I hope we will, you have my permission to not to bow to me like that." He walks off with a hearty laugh. T'Fanal rises from his attack crouch an angry look on his furry face. "Tailbiter here....Did Amber really go crawling to him for aide?" Carston-"No Amber did not. Amber contracted with CHAD, which I am a member of, for mercenary service. King Korag was hired, as was his pantheon. Some of us in CHAD like him about as much as you do. I was not aware the Kzin had dealt with him. They are not a race in the Tosian/ York multiverse. He has been forbidden a leadership role here and it clearly chaffs. Disregard him as I, a native born Tosian, must do sometimes. " T'Fanal nods, "Well said Sir Carston. I shall let my people know to ignore him. He has fought on the side of Saints of Battle in our realms. There are several Kzin Saints of Battle but the ones he fought beside were the Carataz, a lizard race..My regards to your cohorts. I go to join mine." He turns and lops away.

  • Michael James Watson

Bob pops in, "Traxton and Kablin have set aside two Cohorts each. They had a short skirmish with Orcish forces of the Raskara. The Raskara are heading east now. Boney approved their camp with heavy criticism . He will be here momentarily by the way. I expanded Confusion Storm and Magic Missiles, as well as slowing ray in support of the Cohorts. The 2nd and the third are coming with Sir Carston's forces now. " He hovers excitedly. "Speaking of coming now, Boney will be here momentarily."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Well done, Bob. Keep the expenditure of Spells and use of Magic to a minimum; essential use only. Firstly; I may not have the time to re-Rack the Spells, and secondly; I found out that the fastest way to fail this course is to use too much Magic too soon. Use your Power Words and Innate Powers as needed, but sparingly for now. Use your Racked Spells as though they will not be replenished. Also, keep me apprised of any communications you relay between other Cohort Commanders that I am not a part of. Oh, and as well as being Communications Master, you are also on Over Watch; keep watch over all Amber Camps primarily, watch the other armies' camps as needed." If Bob was not speaking verbally, then Realmer will tell Carston what Bob said and that Napoleon is on the way now. Realmer will look over 1st Cohort's Camp one last time to assure all is ready for inspection.

  • Michael James Watson

Boney walks into the Amber camps. Walking though the camp he inspects various elements before walking into the mess hall. He examines it in detail before walking over to Realmer. "Quite a display of magic, Cohort commander. Is that facility for all the Amber cohorts or yours in particular?" He walks by, clearly not expecting an answer. "You seem to have quite a lot of pointed sticks. I assume you will use them to establish a perimeter wall and sleeping structures? " He walks on to Dandril's cohort. and speaks to him briefly. Walking back to Realmer, "Very well... report?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"General; the Mess Hall is for all of Amber's Cohorts. I considered it a necessary use of Magic for several reasons; saving limited resources, a central place to prepare and store food in a defensible location and large enough to handle the large influx of meat our army is about to get." "We have allied with the Dragonriders for a hunt; 5 days march east of here is a field of sweet melons and a herd of nearly 1000 hip pigs. Our forces and theirs will be transported on dragonback to areas surrounding the field, a four hour flight. The sharpened wooden poles are to be used as pig spears; any that survive the hunt will be used around the perimeter in weak security areas." "I have assigned my Familiar, Bob, as Communications Master so that all the Cohort Commanders can remain in contact; his powers are Trump Based. He has also been assigned as Over Watch for the Amber Camps." "I have assigned 33 Fort as my 2nd in command and Strategic Advisor. I have assigned 32 Tesa to gather Stealth Warriors, 10 per Cohort; they will be remaining behind to guard the Camps during the hunt." "I have made contact with Commander T'Fanal of the Kanzari Kzinti 5th Clan; he informs me his Clans are pushing east and northeast, then plan to move towards the plains to the north; they have invited Amber's Armies to join them when we arrive there... I promised nothing."

  • Michael James Watson

He nods. "I see. Few of the previous Amberites have had competitive combat magics. Oberon was never a fan of magic in the hands of others. " He looks at the kitchen.." I could have used that outside Moscow... Of course, I could have used a nuke too. I just spoke to the commander of the Blue Hand Orcs because of their conflict with one of your cohorts. Pity I am not allowed to bounce people home on day one.. Some troops never understand the point of this place. Watch out for them. So the dragons saw the pig herd.. that's predictable. I'll tell you this. Between here and there are at least two weapon cache's and flying over them will make them nearly impossible to find. But food is a priority. " " You have 300 days to reach the other side of the continent. Foe bands are in place. We had a donation recently as a new client nation has requested the Adledrossians to allow them access to the training facility. They would make the 13th client nation. They donated 12 Mandalay stones for the next 10 sessions. Those stones are up for grabs. I suspect their forces will be here next session. There is an applicant observing now ready to pay the weight for his elite forces. They would be the 14th and I don't like their look at all."" Fort asks, "Who are these client nations. if I might ask, mon General?" He nod, looking over the pig poles, "The 13th nation accepted is the Kingdom of York. Their ruler Tolknor paid 5000 Mandalay stones. His ah.. Total Warriors, I believe, will be here next session. The other is the Empire of Azcala. They have offered 2000 Mandalay stones as well as 20,000 Red crystal power focuses. I have voted against them but mine is a single voice and I'm not on the Adledross Council" Fort say, "Merde.....I'm a Total Warrior...Field Captain, but still. figures that as soon as Tolknor could get his troops past the locked Shade level he would expand. And I don't like the idea of Azcalans training here one bit." Fort chuckles, "Alex is going to shit. "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Thank you for the information about the weapons caches, General. I am sure the Kanzari Kzin will find them first; if so, we might be able to trade with them... I did give them information about the pigs location and Commander T'Fanal seemed reasonable enough." "And General, thank you for speaking with the Blue Hand Orc's Commander; I heard about the incident... my Familiar was directly involved, and I really don't want any more problems with them. But we will keep our eyes on them." "And I am in total agreement with both of you; I don't like the idea of Azcalans training here either. And I will make sure King Random hears of it as soon as I return to Amber." Realmer looks thoughtful for a moment, then asks: "General; did you say there is an Applicant from Azcala here, now, observing our training? May I ask who?"

  • Michael James Watson

"a king of some sort.. Zictalas and his wife, sister I think, Zent...something, I believe. There are two others, Azcona, their son, and a wizard of some kind, Xoxol, Scary creatures..I'd rather fight them then speak to them. But that's not how the Adledross do things. I understand Amber will be or is at war with Azcala. Pity Benedict already has a Bonaparte on his staff. " He nods, "Very well. Carry on. You are cleared to proceed. " He looks to fort and speaks in french to him. Fort and he goes back and forth. then Boney nods, salutes with the baton and heads off down the line.

  • Michael James Watson

Fort waits till Boney is out of camp-"He told me the Kzin are far north of the two caches.. He said one is a few hours between here and the melons in a straight line. the other a good way south of the straight line, halfway. One is weapons, the other is cold weather gear."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Did he mention which was which? Doesn't matter. Do you think it likely the Treba Cursis or the Reskara would find those caches first, if we don't send out our teams now? Or do you think it can wait until after the hunt? I don't want to spread our troops out too much. Maybe we leave another... 4 fireteams of 10 each behind, as well as the 5 fireteams guarding the camps... send 2 fireteams each to each cache. Thoughts, Fort?"

  • Michael James Watson

" Depends how much we trust the dragon riders. I thought Roland a little smarmy and Boney put the same restriction on him as he did on Alexandir. that's telling. they have not done anything to warrant distrust and it is day fucking one anyway. If they are going to snake us it won't be for a month at least. So.. I suggest we get them to slow their flight on the pigs to give us a chance to spot the caches from the air. A few hundred dragons, riders and Amberits is a lot of eyes from the sky. A weapons cache and a clothing cache? Probably sizable. Knowing where they are possibly, thanks to the Prisoner of Elbe, gives us a much better chance to spot them.. and.. my sight is good. My wife may not be here but I still have her visual acumen. If its down there, we'll find it. Also, I can think of a dozen Amberites from Rasak that are jungle-woodland types. We have the dragons drop them a few hours in, let them do the ground work'

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Excellent idea, Fort. And I'm sure the Dragonriders will agree if we cut them in on the caches. Make it so." Realmer pauses a moment, looking thoughtful. "As well as the Camp Guards Tesa is gathering and in charge of.... I would also like one Commander to remain behind here at Camp. I will volunteer to stay as I have already ridden on a Dragon, so there is no thrill there for me. And though I have not been on a hunt of this size, I feel my versatile resources and direct link to our Over Watch would be better suited here." "Fort, gather 1st Cohort and the spears and head to the Dragonriders' Camp. If you see Tesa before I do, send her and her fire teams my way."

  • Michael James Watson

"While thats charmingly noble, you should lead the raid for the amberites. As a royal the other cohorts will defer to you anyway. Let Carston stay. he's a good egg. And he has experience killing Orcs, I can assure you. You need to be there as much to keep Roland from making decisions."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"You are my Strategic Advisor, consider me advised. Let Carston know he will be staying. I'll be leaving Bob here too. Guess I'll be gathering the troops and spears..." Realmer trails off as he notices the teddy bear.

  • Michael James Watson

A small plush looking knitted teddy bear walks up to Realmer after Boney leaves. "Pardon the interruption...."


  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer is always wary of cute things; especially very cute things.... they always feel like a trap of some sort. So, Realmer is wary, but friendly. He turns to the teddy bear and nods his head. "Well Met. I am Relmopator, 1st Cohort Commander. How may I help you?"

  • Michael James Watson

"Commander Andala of the Nast Alat would like to invite your officers to dinner tonight, of roast Hare caught on the perimeter. He wishes to make a distinction our clan and the Blue Hand orcs that beached common community early in order to secure food...ah. in this case... your people.. No one was slain but we do not wish your animosity due to their actions. My lady is woefully angry at the blue Hand. Our regards.."

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Your Commander's offer is appreciated and gladly accepted, provided our Commanders and officers are available come dinner time this evening. If we do not show, please do not take offense, we have much happening already and are unsure of our exact timetable. Your Commander's concerns and wishes to make distinction are admirable and again, appreciated. Please send my regards to Commander Andala, and your Lady. I will be in contact with Commander Andala later this day." Realmer nods his head to the teddy bear.

  • Michael James Watson

"Thank you, Lord Relmapator. my Lady, Commander Andala will be pleased. This is her Clan's first attendance at Adledross and she does not wish the Blue Hand to blacken the good regard of the Clan Nast Alat." It bows and waddles off. Fort-'Suddenly I'm feeling tired...hehehe"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

Realmer chuckles and says, "Well, no rest for the wicked. We have a long day ahead of us. Let's get the troops and spears gathered, make sure Tesa has her Stealth Camp Guards ready and move out to the Dragonriders camp."


Adledross: Hunting with Dragon Riders

The field before the Reen camp is filled with dragons. Thick bodied, well muscled, with long strong wings. Not fire-breathers but they clearly seem eager to use their teeth. Watching the dragons they seem to be stretching short wicked upper arms to adjust riding harness. They clearly are intelligent if not verbal. Sounds of eager growls and roars fill the area. The warriors each have a 6' pole, shaved to a point. Each has at least one or two short cudgels. They seem somehow vulnerable out of armor, but as a race they seems strong and well muscled with massively strong looking legs. They have a tendency for short trimmed hair, shaven clean in the back. None have beards save mustaches which seem a common fashion. Count Roland stands behind a man nearly 9' tall with a crudely made maul. the tall man steps forward when Roland points Realmer out. "Cohort Commander! I am Wing Leader Talodak. Well met by dragon light. We stand ready. Out entire flight will go. If other raid our camp they will find nothing. Our plan is to drop 5 miles from the clearing. We can fall great distances. If your people can not they will deed to cling to our warriors. Once we land, we will wait an hour till all the flights are delivered. Then we march. Our people will wait for my signal before attacking. We would like to try to secure 200 beasts. We have made a deal for 50 with the Horseman. A sign of good will with a future reciprocity. I suggest if the Amberites offer a similar sum they will receive the same future reciprocity or we will be wroth with them. Does this suit our accord, as Count Roland earlier described?"

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Wing Commander Talodak. I am 1st Cohort Commander Relmopator. Well met by moonlight and magic. We will be leaving a small contingent behind to guard our camp, as we have more than nothing to lose if raided again. Your plan for the hunt sounds solid and we agree to the culling of extra beasts and the sharing of them with the Horsemen. However, I would like to add to the plan slightly and add a two pronged side mission to take place at the same time." "I have information that there are two caches between here and the melon fields; one weapons, the other heavy clothing. If your Dragons fly low and slow, our combined efforts should be able to spot these caches from the air. One is directly in our path, a few hours march from here, the other about halfway to the field, but much further south. We have some troops specialized in heavily wooded areas that could be dropped, with a few of your men, to find and secure these caches for Amber's Cohorts and Anzara Reen's Wings to split evenly. We can pick them up on the way back." "A slight addition to the hunt; once we have culled our beasts and harvested the melons we desire, please leave enough melons behind to draw the remaining pigs back to the area once we have left. I have made an agreement with the Kanzari Kzin; they will pass near that area in a couple of days and I told them of the hip pigs. They will trade what they find with us fairly and if they reach the Northern Plains first, will share prime space with Amber and Anzara Reen. Do we still have an Accord, Wing Commander?"

  • Michael James Watson

He starts to look to Roland, but Fort, on your other side says Loudly, "Golly! Are those real dragons? I only heard of them in fairy tales!!! Do wee really ride on them?" Talodak looks at Fort in surprise. Roland stutters as he looses the moment to object.. "Ah.. yes,, they are real dragons and we will fly on them.... ah... Yes, Commander, weapons and clothes would be welcome. Our forces had intended to visit the orc band after the dragons had finished with them. It may be orc made but its edged weapons and armor till we find better.. It get cold in the air o clothes are welcome too. A fair split-clothes, weapons planted and Orcish. While my men could carry many weapons I suggest we restrict arms to one apiece till both companies are at least armed. Extras split evenly. I have no love for the Kzin, and my great-uncle Roland even less love for them. But if we are filled with meat, melon, weapon and clothes, let the Kzin know they are welcome to what we leave behind'

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Despite a lack of love for the Kzin, we are on good terms with them now; let us take advantage of that while we can. The plan is sound. A fair split; we have an Accord." Realmer extends his hand to Talodak, but he guards his Psyche against intrusion when they shake hands.

  • Michael James Watson

HE shakes quickly and turns, "MOUNT!!!!!! Commander I have a dragon that is large for it kind. I understand you have a giant? "

  • Daniel Eric Van Campen Sr.

"Yes. ALEXANDIR!" Realmer calls out. When he arrives. "Talodak, Alexandir; our giant." "Amber Cohorts! Pair up with a Rider and mount up!" Realmer shouts. He picks a Rider that is not Roland but makes an Amber Hand Sign to Fort to pair up with him (Roland)... followed by a wink.

  • Michael James Watson

Fort puts his hand on Roland's bicep. "Oh y lord, id\s your dragon strong enough to carry me and someone as strong a virile as you?" Roland scowls at Fort and turns to hurriedly follow the quick man, asking him questions and sticking to him till they mount the dragon. Fort slips up in front of Roland at first but Roland pulls him by the arm roughly and throws him behind. Fort squeals. the dragon take to the air in moments

  • Michael James Watson

Flying fast and with good coordination Tal leads the dragon slower and low after a time the dragons over out to make several rows of dragons the riders start looking below as do passengers.

  • Michael James Watson

The ground troops are lowered and begin ground spaced out because of their few numbers

  • Michael James Watson

The ground looks heavily overgrown with vegetation but seems maneuverable with effort.

  • Michael James Watson

Tal sees something and wheels the dragon north. Flying to another rider thy hover. The rider point to his rider, a native Amberite, ho signs to Relmopator that below is a s